I once conducted a funeral for a word. That’s right, a word. True story.
To my credit, it was a particularly offensive word.
It was mid-year, and I confessed to an elementary school teacher friend of mine that I might just have to throw myself in front of a bus if my students used this word one. more. time. to describe a friend, detail a character, tell of an experience or comment on a piece of literature.
What was the word, you ask? “Nice.”
(I know some of you are rolling your eyes right now. Unless you’re a teacher of beginning writers, and then you’re raising your fist in the air with me in solidarity. I see you fellow English educators; I see you.)
My friend suggested the word-funeral, thus banning “nice” from existence for the remainder of the year. (Apparently, among elementary school teachers, this is a thing.)
At first students joked: “Your shirt is so ‘nice’ today, Mrs. Owens.” “That book we’re reading right now is really ‘nice,’ Mrs. Owens.” “Don’t you think the weather is ‘nice,’ Mrs. Owens?”
Soon after, however, students queried, “If we can’t use the word ‘nice,’ what word can we use?”
And that is where the true education began. We talked of thesauruses and word pictures and showing versus telling. It was so exciting, their enthusiasm for better word choice and truer description and sharper detail.
Not too long ago, someone described my family as being “nice.” After resisting the urge to leap in front of the closest public transportation, I listened as the person struggled to explain. “Your girls are so ‘nice’ to each other; they’re so ‘nice’ to you. How did your family get to be so ‘nice?'”
Don’t get me wrong, her assessment of our family made my heart soar! But also, I wondered later, what DOES it mean to be a “nice” family?
The Bible lays out some clear instructions for how we should treat one another — for how to be “nice.” We are to:
- Love one another (John 15:12)
- Be devoted to one another (Romans 12:10)
- Build one another up (Ephesians 4:29)
- Accept one another (Romans 15:7)
- Instruct one another (Romans 15:14)
- Serve one another (Galatians 5:13)
- Carry one another’s burdens (Galatians 6:2)
- Encourage one another (1 Thessalonians 5:11)
- Be at peace with one another (Mark 9:50)
- Rejoice with one another (1 Corinthians 12:26)
- Pray for one another (James 5:16)
- Forgive one another (Ephesians 4:32)
If we want our kids to be more than just “nice” to us and to one another and to their friends and beyond, we need to help them understand with truer description and sharper detail what being “nice” means.
And so we offer you Undivided: Living FOR and Not Just WITH One Another. It’s a simple, easy-to-use family devotional that will help you take your entire family through each of the “one another” passages above to see with greater clarity what it really means to be a “nice” family according to Scripture.
Our prayer is that together, you’ll be more than just a nice family … that you’ll be loving, devoted, accepting, encouraging, peaceful, prayerful, forgiving — and that as you grow in these areas, you’ll become a family undivided by the pressures and distractions and temptations of this fallen world.
Welcome to Ungrind!
Do you want to be inspired, motivated, and equipped to live the everyday story of your life well?
If so, you’re in the right place. Whether you need encouragement in your relationships or in your faith, I hope you’ll find the transparent voices of mentors and friends here at Ungrind.
So, grab a cup of coffee and keep reading. We're so glad you're here!
Ashleigh Slater, Founder & Managing Editor
Get Our Free Ebook!
How the Psalms Speak to Our Emotions
The Psalms is a book that's rich with the reality of what life's like in this fallen world. Here are...
3 Ways to Navigate Personality Differences
Sometimes personality differences can wear on us. Here are three ways we can navigate them in a loving manner.
Surprised By ‘A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood’
If you haven't seen this film, God may speak to your heart through it in ways you weren't expecting.
The Wedding Ring
Are you struggling in your marriage? Here's how a wedding ring helped one wife fight for her marriage.
5 Ways to Live an Out-of-Control Life
Here are 5 ways to let go of control and trust your present and your future to God.
5 Creative Places to Find Prayer Accountability
Do you want to pray more, but are easily distracted? Here are some practical ways to stay focused.
How to Rescue a Day Gone Wrong in Your Marriage
Just because a day doesn't start well, doesn't mean you can't rescue it.
What Women Are Saying
-- Arlene Pellicane, co-author of Growing Up Social: Raising Relational Kids in a Screen-Driven World and 31 Days to Becoming a Happy Wife
"Real life is not always pleasant. Every marriage experiences disappointments, misunderstandings, sickness and financial crisis. Ashleigh doesn’t camouflage the pain in her own marriage, and offers practical ideas on how to walk through the difficulties and find intimacy on the journey. If you are anything like me, I predict that as you read, you too will find yourself laughing, wiping tears, and saying 'Oh, yes.'"
-- Gary Chapman, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The 5 Love Languages
We are a member of the Amazon affiliate program and regularly use affiliate links. If you purchase an item from an Amazon link we provide, we will receive a small referral commission. This doesn’t cost you anything additional. We only share books, music, and products that our writers personally have used and highly recommend.
Faith4 years ago
When Doing Justly, Loving Mercy, and Walking Humbly Stand at Odds
Motherhood4 years ago
Surviving a Strong-Willed Child
Faith5 years ago
7 Ways to Create A Family Altar
Friendship6 years ago
Beyond the Registry: The Ultimate Gift Guide for Expectant Parents
Relationships5 months ago
5 Ways to Teach Your Child to Hear God
Marriage6 years ago
4 Reasons I’m Not Facebook Friends With My Husband
Everyday Faith5 years ago
6 Simple Ways to Give Thanks in the Thick of It
Articles5 years ago
10 Ways Life is Like a Box of Chocolates
Articles7 years ago
How to Lift Up the One You Love
Articles5 years ago
Relationships10 months ago
Facing Our Motherhood Fears
Digging Into Scripture2 months ago
How the Psalms Speak to Our Emotions