I thought about that moment earlier this week when I forced my five-year-old to taste Cool Whip(TM). He's rounding the corner from being extremely picky to cleaning his plate at dinner occasionally. Horizons beyond beige food are opening up. When he told me that he didn't like Cool Whip, i thought "Pish posh! This child doesn't even know what Cool Whip is!" It's rarely in our house, actually. We usually only acquire it when we're planning to make a jello mold (yum!). I just knew that he would like it. What does scripture say about people, though we are evil, knowing how to give good gifts to our children? He tasted it and made a face like it was mayonnaise that had been left in a car on the fourth of July. I laughed my way through the shock and let him spit it out on a plate. I have to think that in other circumstances in which he had not already made up his mind that he wasn't going to like it, he would have enjoyed artificial whipped cream. Call me crazy.
Just a few days before, however, I'd been in the exact same position. When a family friend came by to take the kids to see the new Muppet movie, Teddy protested that he hated Muppets and didn't want to go. Our friend, a professional counselor of children, said "if he doesn't want to go, he doesn't have to". After asking her to give us a minute, I delivered a surreal speech about how I'd lived a lot longer than him and knew for a fact that he would enjoy himself at that movie. The rousing conclusion can be paraphrased "You are going; put your shoes on." Long story short there: He went. He loved it. He made no move to acknowledge my sagacity.
What do you do when your child resists something you know he/she will find awesome if he/she gives it a chance?