I’m reaching that point with my boys where it’s impossible to avoid uncomfortable conversations. I know they live in a world that doesn’t clearly distinguish right from wrong. The least I can do and should do as a parent is guide them with unchangeable truth. And, I plan to do just that as long as there is breath within me.
What they do with that truth is between them and God. Parents the worse thing we can do is be silent when we know truth must be spoken. It’s not called being mean or overbearing. It’s called being a parent and loving them enough to play your part in their life. Trying to just be the cool parent will only lead to greater heartache.
There are too many examples of parentless kids in society. So, I’ve decided I’m not just going to be a chaperone, but I’m gonna step up and be a parent. I know one day they will be grateful that I cared enough to step up, speak up, and do my best to prepare and protect them while I could. Yes, parenting is never ending, but totally worth every ounce of our effort!
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.” Deuteronomy 6:5-7
Many times in life you’ve simply got to fight to hear God’s voice above the noise both outside and inside. But, what you don’t need to do is let your gut be your God. Just because you think it doesn’t make it true. Just because you can do it doesn’t mean you should do it. And just because you think it’s a great idea doesn’t mean it’s anywhere close to God’s best idea. Don’t be afraid to wait on God as He always reveals Himself in perfect timing to those who seek Him with all their heart.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” Jeremiah 29:11-13
It’s so refreshing having a seven old in your home. He reminds me what it’s like to have a childlike faith. Whatever he prays he expects God to answer. Everyday he thanks God for what he calls the “best day ever.” He still thanks God for watching over his “Boo Boo” our family dog that died tragically almost 4 years ago.
He says “daddy we have to pray because the world needs us to pray.” So he closes his eyes, folds his little hands, and simply trust in a God he cannot see, but evidently knows very deeply. Every time he prays I smile, but sometimes I cry. Because when I grow up I want to be just like him. Free falling in the arms of Jesus never doubting he will catch me every time!
At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, “Who, then, is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” He called a little child to him, and placed the child among them. And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore , whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me.” Matthew 18:1-5
I just got off the phone with my spinal cord stimulator rep. I informed her that I had my unit turned up way higher than ever over the past few days. And, that it’s as if my nerve pain is even worse and that the device is doing nothing. That my legs and lower back are worse than a week ago.
She said, “It sounds like you have been so over stimulated that it’s too saturated in there to do anything. What I need you to do is turn the entire device off for 2 hours. Then, turn it back on at a level 5 instead of 15. I have seen this situation with many others and it should help things to decrease the stimulation.
Honestly, I came close to crying over hearing those words. You see, I desperately needed to hear that things could improve and this was not all in my head. I have never given up hope so far, but after a few days with this level of nerve pain it takes you down quickly. While I’m used to some level of pain we all have our limits and we all need continuous hope.
So, I’ve turned off the unit for now. And I will dial back the settings to give myself greater hope. Sometimes things have to decrease in order for things to increase. Just like in order to become more of who God created us to be we have to become less of who we used to be so He can lead the way.
“He must increase, but I must decrease.” John 3:30
I realize not everybody finds it easy to share what’s on their heart and mind. And, I’m not saying it’s best you always say what you’re thinking or feeling. But, I do know it’s very healthy to have somewhere you can just unload your heavy heart.
If you can’t be honest with your friends are those really friends? If you can’t be honest with family then who can you be honest with? You see, I believe it’s all in our head that we must keep things bottled up inside. When you do that all it leads to is an eventual explosion from unprocessed emotions that built up over time.
So, don’t be afraid to share with others what’s really going on in your life. It’s healthy for you and helps others realize that everyone struggles. I find that people are drawn to true transparency and authenticity. So pray about everything, but don’t be afraid to process anything that is weighing you down. True friends and family will still love you. And you my friend will feel so much better.
“Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” James 5:16