DID YOU RUN TO OR AWAY FROM HIS LOVE?
DID YOU RUN TO OR AWAY FROM HIS LOVE?
When we neglect to call out who our children are, the world will step up and do it for us. However, their truth is often different from ours. Calling out identity is not about what they do, such as, “You are the best soccer player,” or “You always get A’s,” but more so about who they are; “You are patient,” “You are kind,” “You are worthy,” “You are capable.” Calling this forth sets them up for taking on the world and the challenges set before them. The first increases pride as it focuses on their performance and ultimately hinders connection as they learn they are only as good as their successes. The latter increases their identity as it focuses on Christ in them and what He has done. We want our children to walk out the door overflowing with the confidence of how God made them, not feeling the pressure to earn something or strive to become what they think others want them to be.
Nothing turns a sweet mama into an angry grizzly bear faster than partnering with the orphan spirit. The spiritual orphan believes lies such as, “I am all alone,” “No one cares,” “No one sees me,” “No one listens to me,” “Nothing I do matters,” “I am insignificant”… While your child may be doing something to trigger you, they aren’t the real source of your anger – your thoughts are! Next time you are ready to blow, try this, “GOD! I am really angry right now. Would You please reveal to me what LIES I am believing?” Then ask, “Father, what is Your truth?” He loves showing up in our mess and isn’t mad at our anger!
Declare this over your child, even when they are struggling and making messes. “I speak over YOU today there is still room for you at the table. Your messes are part of the growth process. There is still room for you. God has not weakened His gaze or affection over you. You have permission to be on your journey and learn as you grow! We live in a performance-based culture that values your A+ and rejects you for getting a C. God values your process and journey of becoming the full expression of who you were created to be. Break agreement with any voice telling you otherwise!”
BELIEVERS VS. SEEKERS
If I could wave a magic wand and change one thing about Christian parenting, it would be this mindset. Walk with me for a moment as I explain. People become believers out of their journey with God and want to raise their children in a godly home. All is good, except their children aren’t believers… yet. When someone accepts Christ, the Holy Spirit moves inside of them and begins this incredible transformation process that will continue until death. It is gorgeous, glorious and a force to be reckoned with. God LOVES all of His Creation, God SPEAKS to all of His Creation, God CARES about all of His creation. But there is a difference between a spiritual orphan and those who are called Sons and Daughters. Let’s put it this way. Anyone can enter God’s house, open the fridge and eat whatever they want, they have access to God and can talk to Him, but at the end of the day, non-believers go back to being an orphan fending for themselves. Sons and Daughters remain in the palace because it is their home. Not all children are Sons & Daughters… yet. I honestly believe we work against God when we treat our children as if they are believers when in fact, they are still seekers.
I like to get away with God to give Him space to speak to me without an agenda. This is what He showed me during our recent time together. I saw a snake wrapped around me I assumed it meant some sort of deliverance (yikes), but He began to talk to me about being ‘joined at the hip’ and how the snake serves as fuzz in Velcro, preventing it from fully attaching and sticking together. I also saw a picture of slime, which by nature, is to be repulsive. Hmmm. As I inquired about the snake, He said the word, ‘scales’ three times. At first, I thought He meant the skin of a snake, but suddenly I saw a picture of a weight scale and instantly heard in my spirit, “God despises unbalanced scales.” This has to do with cheating on the true worth and value of something. I saw a line across a page, and He began to show me that when we are adopted, we are to live in that space. It includes our identity, worth, value, destiny, abilities, energy level, faith, etc. He showed me how people elevate themselves above the line with pride, idol worship (and allowing others to worship them), taking up space that isn’t theirs to take, self-promotion with an orphan heart, striving, building a platform over building His Kingdom, etc. This picture was easy for my mind to see and grasp. Then He said, “But there is another unbalanced scale that I hate,” and He showed me those who operate below the line by partnering with being disempowered, lack need for permission or approval, lacking godly confidence, being timid, shrinking back, not owning their voice, dismissing their gifts, comparison, etc. One elevates themselves above where God has them, and the other lowers themselves below God’s call on their lives. Both are out of balance of the true worth and value of a life called and adopted by God for His Kingdom and purposes. The only way to fully attach to others in the way God intended is to do so from the position He has called us. It is nearly impossible to connect in a healthy way to an idol, just as much as it is hard to thrive with someone who partners with lack. If you find yourself in either camp outside of the balanced God-given space, I encourage you to take some time to make this right with Him. Confess it and ask Him to bring you into His measurement of who you are!
WATCH YOUR MOUTH
Mamas, you can’t speak badly about your body and not have it affect your son’s and daughter’s belief about women. They learn to honor, respect, and value a woman’s body through you. So watch what you say about yourself!
SHIFTING OUR GAZE
It is hard to know who you are when you spend the majority of the time staring at a lens with your own reflection. We only truly discover who we are when we gaze into the One who created us in His image. Selfies only reflect what you want to see. God’s image reflects who we were made to become.
As parents, we get to blow on our child’s areas of strength and empower them in their areas of weakness. We have the privilege of helping them unpack what is inside of them by God’s intentional design to impact those around them. The more this is discovered in childhood, the easier adulthood will be because they already have a grid for who they are. You can’t operate successfully unless you know your original design and purpose.
FINDING OUR WAY BACK
Jeremiah 1:5 (The Message) – “Before I shaped you in the womb, I knew all about you. Before you saw the light of day, I had holy plans for you: A prophet to the nations – that’s what I had in mind for you.”
Every newborn is birthed from a place of utter seclusion with the Creator! This reality is beyond breathtaking. No wonder Jesus tells us to imitate children, for they just came from His presence for nine months straight!
God places something deep within every human being – an identity and destiny! Our identity is who we are, and our destiny is what we are called to do with our time on earth. However, the moment a newborn gasps for air and the umbilical cord is cut, they leave the place of perfect seclusion and enter into a fallen world. Instantly, they enter a world where the enemy tries to wrap them in insecurity, fear, and heaviness. They will spend the rest of their life finding their way BACK to their original position in the womb. I do not mean in the physical fetal position but the position of being fully loved, completely secure, and highly adored!
A newborn spends nine months with God oohing and aahing over them. They are protected, safe, and loved just because they are! They do not have to earn anything, make anything happen, or work at anything. They just need to BE! Inhale that for a moment. They do NOTHING, yet God is so excited and pleased with them. He giggles when they wiggle. He smiles when they sleep. He protects their fragile being in His mighty hand. Then, they are born, and eventually, the world teaches them that they aren’t all that special and do not matter much at all. Their parents are too busy for them. They long to be held and nurtured. The fighting in the house tells them that the safety of the womb is long gone. The kids on the playground do not like them either, so something must surely be wrong with them. They grow up feeling alone and isolated. They smile but are dying on the inside. They realize their voice is useless because no one listens to them. The fashion magazines tell them that they were created lacking what everyone else seems to be gifted with. The news reminds them that their world is harsh and cruel. They marry hoping their spouse will return them to that sweet, safe place in the womb, but instead, they only add more blankets of hurt, wounds, and feeling unsafe. HOWEVER… we are an army rising up and releasing God’s Kingdom, restoring our children to their Father, the way it was designed to be – absorbed in His presence, safe and secure!