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Four styles of parenting

  1. 1. The Four Styles of Parenting & the Four Types of Foolishness in Children by Mark Hamby www.lamplighterpublishing.com
  2. 2. LAMPLIGHTER.NET Character Comprehension Quizzes
  3. 3. 5 Family Fears 1. Fear that our children will make life- dominating mistakes. 2. Fear that our children will not “turn out right.” 3. Fear that we are failing as a family. 4. Fear that a family member will die or be seriously injured or sick. 5. Fear that our children will not share out family’s values and faith. Schreur and Shreur (1994, pp. 38-39)
  4. 4. Anxiety activates the lower hemisphere of our brain. Feelings become overpowering, we react rather than respond thoughtfully. Thinking is narrowly focused. We blame, defend, attack. We become careless about our own boundaries and are unable to respect the boundaries of others. Anxious, we are preoccupied with self-preservation. What can we do?
  5. 5. Be anxious for nothing, but everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your request be made known unto God. Phil. 4:6 (ask for God to change you, not those you think are the cause of your anxiety and pain.) Be transformed through the renewing of your 85%!, that you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. Rom. 12:1,2
  6. 6. “Those who desire to be perfect parents really desire perfect children so that their own image is exalted.”
  7. 7. My life is determined to make others feel guilty and pressured so they will never let me down. Dictatorial Enmeshed IndulgentDetached Rigid Disconnected Overly Connected Permissive Life depends on convincing others they can’t live without me. Life depends on indulging others so I will be accepted and appreciated. Life depends on keeping others from blaming me for what goes wrong. Safe Zone
  8. 8. DISTANT DEFIANT DUTIFUL COMPLIANT DEPENDENT PASSIVE MANIPULATIVE IRRESPONSIBLE Life depends on convincing others… Core Belief: Life Depends on getting what I want without… Asking anything of me. Reward without Responsibility. Core Belief: Life depends on giving power & responsibility to others…, obsessed opposed dependentindependent I’m someone I’m not. Core Belief: Depending upon anyone. So change will not depend upon me. Core Belief: Life depends on giving me what I want without…
  9. 9. ` DISTANT DEFIANT DUTIFUL COMPLIANT DEPENDENT PASSIVE MANIPULATIVE IRRESPONSIBLE Moral Superiority, anxious to please, perfectionism, rigid, repress or underreport negative emotions, functional friends-if they work for them, Rule-breakers, deceitful, power-hungry, promiscuous, few friends, “If you love me, you’ll let me use you.” Charming, naturally talented, outgoing, sociable, seductive, always changing friends. Quiet, Passive, Fearful, Non-assertive, little eye contact, melt into background, easily controlled by others obsessed opposed dependentindependent Intimacy isn’t important, just what they can do for me, fear of failure, shame.
  10. 10. Dictatorial Parenting (Authoritative) •Make others feel guilty and pressured so they will never let me down. Mercy Lam. 3 His mercies are… •Angrily demanding, fault finding •Cut their kids off when talking Disapproving; •High Concern for responsibility / low concern for relationship. •Make others keep their distance •I keep my children busy to help fulfill my goals. (My needs are center stage.)
  11. 11. My oldest daughter and I have a "love/hate" relationship it seems. Though we never said hate, her disobedience and my anger seemed to convey that. Because of the messages I have heard this weekend and by the Lord's help, I already have seen a difference. I am being more patient and more of a servant now. The afternoon I came back, we were at church for a missions conference and my younger daughter had to go to the bathroom. I asked my oldest daughter if she could please accompany her and she said no. Instead of getting upset and scolding her for not being willing (acting like the Holy Spirit) as I usually do, I said “Ok, I will do it.” Shortly afterwards, she came to me and said she was sorry. Just yesterday, she folded the laundry without being asked and she has never done that before! Thank you so much for your exhortion to be more Christ-like. May God richly bless you and your ministry! With a grateful heart,
  12. 12. Enmeshed Parenting •Uses own children as comfort •Father and mother always know best •Parents feel like a martyr •Not fault finding… •Overprotective & inquisitive Faith Fault reminding!Fault reminding! •Can’t change parenting style as child grows and expresses independence. •Disables independent behavior •Convince others they cannot live without me.
  13. 13. Indulgent Parenting •Indulges others so they’ll be accepted & appreciated •Parent pleads, over trusting, thrive on harmony •Parent uses child to meet parents needs •Easily hurt, under use parental power •Whatever it takes from keeping your child from pushing you away •Fear based •Selfishness is at the center Vulnerable with boundaries
  14. 14. • "If a child learns a trade, or his highly educated for a lucrative profession, all is nothing compared to the art of detachment from riches; if you want to make your child rich, teach him this. he is truly rich who does not desire great possessions, or surrounds himself with wealth, but who requires nothing…Don't worry about giving him an influential reputation, for worldly wisdom, but ponder deeply how you can teach him to think lightly of this life's passing glories, thus he will become truly renowned and glorious…Don't strive to make him a clever orator, but teach him to love true wisdom. He will suffer if he lacks clever words, but if he lacks wisdom, all the rhetoric in the world can't help him. A pattern of life is what is needed, not empty speeches; character, not cleverness; deeds, not words. These things will secure the kingdom of God and bestow God's blessings. Chrystosom 347 AD.
  15. 15. Detached Parenting •Defer decisions / Permissive •Hands off, let things run their course. •Let others lead their kids Grace •Keeping others from blaiming me for what goes wrong. •Work-a-holic, involved outside home, father home late
  16. 16. Results of Dictatorial Parenting (Authoritative) And Jephthah vowed a vow unto the LORD, and said, …it shall be, that whatsoever cometh forth of the doors of my house to meet me, when I return in peace from the children of Ammon, shall surely be the LORD's, and I will offer it up for a burnt offering. Judges 11:30-31 Mercy
  17. 17. Results of Dictatorial Parenting (Authoritative) And Jephthah came to Mizpeh unto his house, and, behold, his daughter came out to meet him with timbrels and with dances: and she was his only child; beside her he had neither son nor daughter. And it came to pass, when he saw her, that he rent his clothes, and said, Alas, my daughter! thou hast brought me very low, and thou art one of them that trouble me: for I have opened my mouth unto the LORD, and I cannot go back. Mercy
  18. 18. Results of Dictatorial Parenting (Authoritative) And she said unto her father, Let this thing be done for me: let me alone two months, that I may go up and down upon the mountains, and bewail my virginity, I and my maidens. Judges 11:37 Mercy
  19. 19. Dear Mark, I am a mother of 3 children, a 10 year old son, a 4 year old daughter, and an almost 3 year old son. They are wonderful children, around everyone else. They are respectful and obedient, for everyone else. They are loving and kind, to everyone else. I'm not saying that they are horrible towards me, but the loving moments are few and far between when compared to the times we are frequently at odds and I am yelling and screaming and "molding" them. I am a screamer, and in my 10 years of parenting my temper has gotten hotter and my patience shorter. My mother was a screamer and I believe I was verbally and emotionally abused as a child and swore that I would never do that to my children. But here I am as an adult doing to my children what my mother did to me, jokingly talking to my friends about the therapy they'll need as adults while my heart was breaking inside for the way I treated them. Until now I haven't been able to break this cycle. I hadn't tried the one thing I should have tried from the beginning - prayer.
  20. 20. I had grown very distant from God and my relationship with Him had become very strained. I have felt Him tugging at my heart, but I have been rebelling against Him, like my children have rebelled against me. I haven't had devotional time, prayer time, or gone to church regularly for years. My husband takes our three children to church by himself every Sunday. I have used the excuse that I needed to sleep (I work nights every weekend as a nurse and get off at 7:30 am Sunday and have to be back Sunday night at 7:00 pm), but I have been able to stay up and attend church once every 3 or 4 months if there was a special function. I was so far from God that I didn't know where to even begin to draw near to Him again. • I believe that God placed me in that auditorium Friday to reach me. God used you to finally get though to me and break my heart. I cried throughout the hour, wiping tear after tear from my face, first hoping that no one noticed me (after all, it's ALL about what other people think...that's what Mom always said), then later not caring. My relationship with God was broken and my relationship with my children was being destroyed by my hands and words. All of the letters that you shared sounded like I could have written them. The detailed examples you gave sounded like me, always scolding, yelling, demanding more. • At the end of the lecture I walked across the hall to the bathroom to compose myself. Usually when something affects me to tears I can wipe them away and go on. I ended up in a stall in the bathroom, sobbing and crying out to God. I don't know how long I was in there, I just know that things are different now. The Holy Spirit worked a change in me that day. That was the first time I've prayed to God in years, really prayed. I've sent up little prayers when I needed or wanted something, but I haven't REALLY prayed. •
  21. 21. When I went back to the hotel later that day, my husband noticed the change. He kept asking me if I was ok. I told him about your lecture and how great the conference was, but I haven't explained the whole experience to him. I was calm with my children the rest of the day. I didn't lose my patience even once. I asked less of them and did more for them. I got up from the floor or bed to get something for myself instead of asking my 10 year old to retrieve it. I didn't yell and scream when my daughter was having a stubborn, demanding moment that before would have sent me off the deep end in 3 seconds. I didn't scream or yell, not that I could have if I had wanted to. (Oh, I neglected to tell you that God had taken my voice from me on this particular day. I had been sick during the week and my voice was getting hoarse on Thursday, but on Friday it was GONE. This was either a sick joke on God's part or His divine intervention. I believe the latter, that He was giving me that little extra bit of help that I needed to get started.) My husband told me later that night "It got through." I asked "What got through?" He replied, "Whatever you heard today. It got through." It is now Monday morning and I haven't raised my voice (which came back on Saturday) in almost 3 full days. My son (who is not an openly affectionate child in public) came up beside me several times at Universal Studios yesterday and held my hand as we walked through the park. He is talking to me again. My 2 year old picked me a flower and then, as he was walking away, he turned around and told me " You need to put it in water, Mommy." They are beginning to warm up to me again. I can see their fear melting, but there is still an air of caution there. My daughter isn't quite as forgiving and I'm searching for subtle changes. I know that they will come, but she will be my biggest test.
  22. 22. At my parents' home last night my oldest was playing with my brother-in-law's air rocket in the front yard. When my brother-in-law went outside to put the rocket away, there was one missing. My son swore that they were there when he came inside. Normally, he would go to his grave swearing that he had or hadn't done something, even when all of the evidence pointed to the contrary. We were all wandering around aimlessly with flashlights looking for the missing rocket. I took my son aside and told him that I needed him to tell me the truth. I told him I wouldn't be mad (not a promise I had kept in the past) but that we needed to know what happened to it. He took his flashlight and shined it high into a tree where the light reflected off the white tip off the rocket. He had known exactly where the rocket had landed, and he FINALLY trusted me with the truth. My heart was so full in that moment. My son wasn't afraid of me. I know that this change won't happen overnight. It's going to take a lot of prayer, but I'm talking to God again and rebuilding that relationship while I rebuild my relationships with my children. I have sent small prayers to God continuously since that day. I pray for strength to get through a single moment. I praise Him for small accomplishments. I pray for wisdom. And I pray prayers of thanks that He put me in Orlando on Friday, in your lecture, where He worked a change in my life. This letter ended up being much longer that I originally anticipated. Thank you for your time. I needed to share my experience and I thought that you would like to hear how your words and the Holy Spirit's work changed my life. Thank you,
  23. 23. Results of Emmeshed Parenting Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age: and he made him a coat of many colors. And when his brethren saw that their father loved him more than all his brethren, they hated him, and could not Faith speak peaceably unto him. And Joseph dreamed a dream, and he told it his brethren: and they hated him yet the more. Gen. 37:3-5
  24. 24. • Gen 44:29 If you take this one also from me, and harm happens to him, you will bring down my gray hairs in evil to Sheol.' • Gen 44:30 "Now therefore, as soon as I come to your servant my father, and the boy is not with us, then, as his life is bound up in the boy's life, • Gen 44:31 as soon as he sees that the boy is not with us, he will die, and your servants will bring down the gray hairs of your servant our father with sorrow to Sheol.
  25. 25. Results of Indulgent Parenting Now the sons of Eli were worthless men; they knew not the LORD. And the priests' custom with the people was, that, when any man offered sacrifice, the priest's servant came, while the flesh was in seething, with a fleshhook of three teeth in his hand. 1 Samuel 2:12,13 Truth
  26. 26. Results of Indulgent Parenting And if any man said unto him, Let them not fail to burn the fat presently, and then take as much as thy soul desireth; then he would answer him, Nay; but thou shalt give it me now: and if not, I will take it by force. Wherefore the sin of the young men was very great before the LORD: for men abhorred the offering of the LORD. 1 Samuel 2:16, 17 Truth
  27. 27. Results of Indulgent Parenting And Absalom came to the king, and said, Behold now, thy servant hath sheepshearers; let the king, I beseech thee, and his servants go with thy servant. And the king said to Absalom, Nay, my son, let us not all now go, lest we be chargeable unto thee. And he pressed him: howbeit he would not go, but blessed him. 2 Samuel 13:24, 25 Truth
  28. 28. Results of Indulgent Parenting Then said Absalom, If not, I pray thee, let my brother Amnon go with us. And the king said unto him, Why should he go with thee? But Absalom pressed him, that he let Amnon and all the king's sons go with him. Now Absalom had commanded his servants, saying, Mark ye now when Amnon's heart is merry …then kill him, fear not: have not I commanded you? be courageous and be valiant. 2 Sam. 13:28. Truth
  29. 29. Results of Detached Parenting And Caleb said, He that smiteth Kirjath-sepher, and taketh it, to him will I give Achsah my daughter to wife. And Othniel the son of Kenaz, Caleb's younger brother, took it: and he gave him Achsah his daughter to wife. Judges 1:12-15 Grace
  30. 30. Results of Detached Parenting And it came to pass, when she came to him, that she moved him to ask of her father a field: and she lighted from off her donkey; and Caleb said unto her, What wilt thou? And she said unto him, Give me a blessing: for thou hast given me a south land; give me also springs of water. And Caleb gave her the upper springs and the nether springs. Judges 1:14-15 Grace
  31. 31. Does Grace Really Work? Dear Mr. Hamby, …When our first child was born 7 years ago, I looked and looked for Christian teaching on discipline and raising godly children. I settled on a "first-time obedience" approach that was popular. My husband willingly went along with it, being as uncertain as I was about how to raise godly children.
  32. 32. I carried a lot of anger and resentment toward my children. I viewed their disobedience as a personal offense against me. I was exasperated by their lack of self-control and emotions. My oldest daughter is very strong-willed, and her temper tantrums were outrageous. The tantrums were not used as a tool to get attention in public or to manipulate me, but they were always directed at me (rarely her father)… Her behavior outside of the home was impeccable. It made it very hard to talk with anyone about this problem.
  33. 33. No one believed there WAS a problem, or passed it off as an isolated incident or a “stage.” And no one ever, ever challenged me to remove the log in my own eye. She did not sleep well at night since very early on. She was defiant and talked back a lot. My daughter never completed a chore without intervention from me. She was determined to have her say when corrected. It was an uphill battle all the time, and quite frankly I didn't enjoy her at all.
  34. 34. …I had found a discipline style that suited me early on...but I had not truly searched the scriptures to find how to reach my children’s hearts. While I thought I was following God's lead, I realize that I had my own agenda and it was a self-righteous one that didn't require me to change. I wasn't willing to consider that my convictions were selfish ones. I confessed my sin to the Lord and began to show more tenderness and self-control with my daughter. I still fell into the old ways often, though.
  35. 35. It wasn't until I listened to your tapes that I really heard some things to apply in my life…I could have put my name in your place. I was ALWAYS correcting my daughter, ALWAYS finding fault with her endeavors, ALWAYS saying her name in a way that implied disapproval or correction, ALWAYS fussing about undone chores. I had placed responsibility over relationship. I had a child who was fearful of my correction - that's the root of the sleep problem, and the reason for her unwillingness to try so many things. I was not casting out fear with love.
  36. 36. …I realized that little Sarah had very little chance of earning my approval. I stopped getting angry every time a simple chore was left undone. I stopped spanking. I stopped lecturing. I started cleaning her toys up outside without asking her to help. I went upstairs and made her bed in the morning. She spent a Saturday morning with me to run errands. I asked her what she wanted to do, and that's what we did. The errands got done another day. She loves flowers and gardens; I bought her a ton of seed packets and helped her plant them. She loves to paint; I started painting with her several times a week. I started hanging a butterfly on her closet door at night after she fell asleep, so if she woke up she would KNOW that I had kept my promise to check on her. I started hugging and kissing her intentionally.
  37. 37. In a matter of days, the most remarkable thing happened. I was doing some cleaning, and I asked my youngest to do a small chore, which she did willingly. Without my asking for help, Sarah set about doing chores—big chores that required a lot of effort on her part. She dusted, swept, and washed dishes. She straightened up and put things away properly. It was then I realized what a different child she had become. She sleeps better at night. She laughs more, and she is not as angry.
  38. 38. She takes offenses from her younger sister better. She handles disappointment with grace and not anger. She says “yes ma'am” and “no ma'am” consistently. She accepts my correction willingly and changes her behavior when necessary. She cleans up her outdoor toys without being told. She wants me to read to her now instead of just tolerating it. And best of all, she has started talking about the things that are in her heart, and she wants ME to hear them.
  39. 39. When I started trying to disciple Sarah the way Jesus would, she bloomed. She is a joy to be with, and I have lost my anger and impatience. When those feelings do try and creep to the surface I can label them, confess them, and deal with them before they control me. …God allows us to remember our sins, not so we condemn ourselves repeatedly, but so we can show others what he has delivered us from. … Our God is a GREAT God.
  40. 40. Addendum
  41. 41. Results of Detached Parenting And when Shechem the son of Hamor the Hivite, prince of the country, saw Dinah the daughter of Jacob, he took her, and lay with her, and defiled her. And his soul clave unto Dinah the daughter of Jacob, and he loved the damsel, and spake kindly unto the damsel. Genesis 34:1-5 Grace
  42. 42. Results of Detached Parenting And Shechem spake unto his father Hamor, saying, Get me this damsel to wife. And Jacob heard that he had defiled Dinah his daughter: now his sons were with his cattle in the field: and Jacob held his peace until they were come. Genesis 34:27-30 Grace
  43. 43. Results of Detached Parenting The sons of Jacob came upon the slain, and spoiled the city, because they had defiled their sister. They took their sheep, and their oxen, and their asses, and that which was in the city, and that which was in the field, And all their wealth, and all their little ones, and their wives took they captive, and spoiled even all that was in the house. Genesis 34:27-30 Grace
  44. 44. Results of Detached Parenting And Jacob said to Simeon and Levi, Ye have troubled me to make me to stink among the inhabitants of the land… and I being few in number, they shall gather themselves together against me, and slay me; and I shall be destroyed, I and my house. Genesis 34:27-30 (different styles of parenting for each child) Grace
  45. 45. Results of Detached Parenting Then said Hezekiah unto Isaiah, Good is the word of the LORD which thou hast spoken. And he said, is it not good, if peace and truth be in my days? And the rest of the acts of Hezekiah, and all his might, and how he made a pool, and a conduit, and brought water into the city, are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Judah? And Hezekiah slept with his fathers: and Manasseh his son reigned in his stead. 2nd Kings 20: 19 – 21. Grace
  46. 46. Results of Detached Parenting Grace Manasseh was twelve years old when he began to reign, and reigned fifty and five years in Jerusalem. 2nd Kings 21:1 And he did that which was evil in the sight of the LORD, after the abominations of the heathen, whom the LORD cast out before the children of Israel. V.2.
  47. 47. THE GOALS OF MISBEHAVIOR If the PARENT FEELS: And tends to REACT by: And if the CHILD’S RESPONSE is: The CHILD’S GOAL is: Which means the CHILD BELIEVES: A PARENT’S ALTERNATIVES include: Annoyed Irritated Reminding Coaxing Stops temporarily, but later resumes same or another disturbing behavior UNDUE ATTENTION (to keep others busy with him) I count (belong) only when I’m being noticed or served. I’m only important when I am keeping you busy with me. Ignore. Give positive attention at other times. Avoid undue service. Say it only once, then act. Make special time. Set up routines. Take time for training. Use natural and logical consequences. Encourage. Angry Provoked Challenged Threatened Fighting; Giving in: Thinking: “You can’t get away with it.” “I’ll make you.” Wanting to be right. Intensifies behavior; Defiant compliance; Feels he’s won when parents are upset. POWER (to be boss) I belong only when I am boss or in control, or proving no one can boss me. “You can’t make me.” Don’t fight and give in. Withdraw from conflict. Ask for help. Do the unexpected. Be firm and kind. Act, don’t talk. Develop mutual respect. Develop positive power. Give limited choices. Set reasonable and few limits. Encourage. Hurt Disappointment Disbelief Disgust Retaliating; Getting even; Thinking: “How could you do this to me?” Feeling sorry for. Retaliates; Intensifies; Escalates the same behavior or chooses another weapon. REVENGE (to get even) I belong only by hurting others as I feel hurt. I can’t be liked or loved. Avoid feeling hurt. Avoid punishment and retaliation. Build trust. Deal with the hurt feelings. Use reflective listening. Make amends. Show you care. Act, don’t talk. Encourage. Despair Hopelessness Worry “I give up.” Giving up; Doing for; Over- helping Retreats further; Passive; No improvement; No response ASSUMED DISABILITY Display of INADEQUACY (to be left alone) I belong only by convincing others not to expect anything of me. I am helpless and unable; it’s no use trying. Stop all criticism. Encourage any positive attempt, no matter how small. Focus on assets. Don’t pity. Don’t give up. Show faith. Offer chances for success. Teach skills / Show ho. Take small steps. Step back. Encourage, encourage, encourage.
  48. 48. Safe Zone Safe Zone Safe Zone R E S P O N S I B I L I T Y R E L A T I O N S H I P Safe Zone
  49. 49. Serving w/ Humility involvement, support, privilege Mercy & Grace Independence Widen Boundaries Closeness w/ Balance Faith Relationship w/ Father Connectedness Sacrifice, Trust & Love Deferred Gratification Increased Responsibility expectations, consequences, TRUTH R E S P O N S I B I L I T Y R E L A T I O N S H I P Psalm 103: 8-18 Judges 11 Prov. 18:12,13 Eph. 6:4 Col. 3:21 Prov. 10:12 Psalm 131 Genesis 37 Judges 1 Genesis 34 2nd Kings 20 & 21 Proverbs 16 I John 1:7 1st Samuel 2 Proverbs 22:29 Psalm 1
  50. 50. “By far, most issues adults bring into counseling are directly related to their fathers.” Minirth, Neman, & Warren, 1992, p. 12 Malachi 4:6
  51. 51. Dear Mark, God has been working hard on my heart for the last several years about changes I needed to make. Of course I resisted every time. God has been revealing to me that I was losing my son’s heart. Then I heard your gift of telling the story of God's heart and sharing your life cut to the core. Like Fenelon said, God knew exactly where to place the knife ... He knew exactly what I needed to hear to WAKE UP and see my son's wounded spirit. My son just wants me to love him and accept him, but because he's so much like me and because I have so many issues with loving and accepting the ugliness in my life (past and present), I wasn't doing what wasn't done for me! I wasn't really LOVING my son. I wasn't valuing him as a gift from God. Though not perfect, I am getting better because I am learning so much about myself; I can never thank you enough! You are my mentor and I hope to learn much from you over the years! I know it's a message that I can't hear just once, but one that I need to hear OVER AND OVER AND OVER again until I can learn to love better and love like God loves me. I have a lot of learning to do about God's heart for me and accepting that the God I met as a child was sorely misrepresented. The God I met was a condemner, a finger- pointer, he knew my sins, each and every one. He saw me hiding under my bed when I was five trying to escape punishment. He didn't accept me for who I was and not only that, he helped me build a wall around my heart, brick by brick, to 'protect' myself ... but now I know that wasn't God. But I was too young to know and too afraid to talk to anyone about my fears. So I built a wall and became STRONG in my heart so that my heart couldn't be hurt. To this day, I have NO IDEA why or how I became a brick-laying-wall-builder. And to this day I am still having to tear down that wall and expose my heart so that God can show me WHO HE IS, so I can allow Him to love me, so I can change.
  52. 52. • You taught me that, that it's all about a heart change; a heart change that takes place when I apply the Word of God to my life. It came when you read that woman's letter ... Sarah's mom. She shared that she had no joy in her child and I broke down. I don't have joy in my son. I have had much joy with my other children but not with my son. I could have written the first half of her letter! The key God spoke about is that I can and will write the second half of her letter someday! That there is healing restoration for me and my son, healing restoration for my heart. • One day at a time, one brick at a time, God will tear down that wall around my heart and as HE does, I will love better the people who I truly love the most! Thank you for being an instrument to His will. You've likely saved my life and the life of my children because your story has forever changed me. • I have a passion too; that my children KNOW and FEEL and fully EXPERIENCE God's love through me. I want to be a living legacy for my children, they are the ONLY things I can take to heaven someday and I passionately want them to choose Christ! I want my children to know the ONE TRUE God, to know how incredibly passionate He is for each one of them. We went on a trip recently and I told my daughter how God made those mountains so beautiful with her in mind. He made them just for her enjoyment, and for a moment, I saw what it's like to see someone see God - her face was radiant, like Moses' must have been!!! I wish you could have seen her! I told her about how God made her heart with his own hands, how he fashioned it and molded it and placed it in her chest inside my womb. How he loves her and delights in her joy for the things of God. • I am getting a chance to do for my children what was not done for me ... to tell them the truth of God and love them like God loves them. To help them trust Him and rely on Him and go to Him with everything. Thank you for reminding me of the preciousness of the gift that they truly are and for teaching me about God's heart—for me! • I know this is rather long, but the message you have needs to be heard by everyone! I have many, many friends who NEED to hear what you have said about God's love and loving others! • Laura
  53. 53. • Dear Laura: • You can be sure of one thing, that Satan is going to do everything in his power to destroy the work that was started in your life. You are just too injurious to his plan because you might just truly live out what you have heard. And if you do that, your children may be detrimental to his plan, not to mention your marriage. • Dear Mark: • You know, it's funny you mention that... • Two of my VERY closest girlfriends, {who happen to be struggling with some of the same issues (an incorrect view of who God IS, and the frustrations of raising children)} have been wonderful advisors, listeners, shoulders, etc. We have all come to the same conclusion, that Satan is after our children. If he can twist love into something it's NOT and warp them into believing the lie he had me believe ... I just shudder to think! • One thing that I am finding is that many of my friends are dealing with similar issues! I am beginning to think it is somewhat a generational thing ... • • Ryan and I finished Teddy's Button last week! Oh that book was such a blessing to us and Godly timed as we have been dealing with character issues and TB really helped Ryan to understand the real battle! Now, I KNOW you've never heard anyone say this, but honestly, it WAS the best book I have ever read! We've talked about it for days since and I often remind Ryan of the Bully Teddy fought and how Ryan's real enemy is in his own heart as it is for all of us! You know what he asked me? "Can I kill my enemy?" OH, my heart breaks for him - on one hand, yes Ryan you can fight to defeat him every day, but no son, you can't kill him, he's part of you. Only when you die and go to heaven will you be without your enemy. It's moments like these where I get a glimpse of the power God stirs in my son's heart. How fragile is that relationship between Ryan and I that will ultimately determine how easily he defeats his enemy and how hard he works to fly the Banner of Love!! • Laura
  54. 54. Involvement / Expectation / Support / Privilege / Authority / Consequ HIGH LOW WHERE AM I AS A PARENT?
  55. 55. Sarah Edwards knew how to make her children regard and obey her cheerfully, without loud angry words, much less heavy blows. She seldom punished them, and in speaking to them, used gentle and pleasant words. If any correction was necessary, she did not administer it in passion; when she had occasion to reprove and rebuke she would do it in few words, without noise; she had need to speak but once; she was cheerfully obeyed because she convinced her children of the reasonableness of her request; murmuring and answer again were not known among them. The kind and gentle treatment they received from their mother, while she strictly and punctiliously maintained her parental authority, seemed naturally to…promote a filial respect and affection, and to lead them to a mild, tender treatment of each other. Quarrelling and contention, which too frequently take place among children, were in her family unknown.