This story broke my heart when I heard it, and I haven’t been able to shake it. A young man was raised with legalistic parents. He went into the homosexual lifestyle and was cut off from every family member for not renouncing his ungodly lifestyle. He is in the midst of writing a book about his journey, which includes being raped as a small boy but never telling anyone. This I know for sure. After the rape, he acted out the splinters in his heart, as our bodies are not wired to hold onto that type of trauma. He was most likely angry, defiant, aggressive, rude, and/or withdrawn, yet was met with parents who had a high value for outward behavior. Could you imagine for a moment what it is like for a child to endure such brutal agony and then be spanked, isolated, or rejected while trying to process it? My heart screams out for children to be HEARD and for parents to understand what is happening inside their hearts. Our online class is not a product I am selling. It is a lifeline to HELP parents see and help their children. You cannot afford NOT to be empowered and equipped. Your children need to know you have the answers and tools to help them.
FAILURE TO SEE
What does a heart splinter in our children look like? A child of mine made a mess – a big one in my book. And then attempted to cover it up even though I have repetitively taught my children that coming to me is always the better route than keeping it from me. They lied to my face not once but FIVE times. Each time I could feel it and finally encouraged them to take some time to gain the confidence to answer honestly. They did, kinda (not really). An hour later, I invited them to talk about it, and their response lacked heart and vulnerability. I could feel FEAR from them and kept reminding them that partnering with fear in their messes would not help them clean it up. They commented about always being the one to disappoint me (which was odd because this child is the one who goes out of their way NOT to disappoint others almost to a fault). While I rarely use isolation as a parenting tool, I felt like this child needed to sit out and spend some time processing on their own. I brought them dinner and reminded them that I loved them but that three issues were going on. #1. The original mess. #2. Their response to the mess. #3. Their belief that they are always a disappointment.
They grabbed their journal and began to talk to Jesus about the splinter in their heart. By the time dinner was over, genuine tears were present. I invited them to share, and with great emotion, they said they asked Jesus to show them when they first felt like they were a disappointment and recalled a time six years ago. I did not manage my emotions well. She did something wrong, and it was the tipping point for me, and my response to her was larger than her offense. I remember the event well. I asked if they were willing to forgive me for the event and for introducing her to the idea she was a disappointment. I did not introduce her to that – the enemy did, but he worked through my choice not to manage my emotions well. Forgiving me removes the hook the enemy was using against them. We asked Jesus what LIE they believed because of this event, and He said, “That when Mom is upset, it means you will be alone.” I knew it was their truth because, when Jesus revealed that, great emotion came over them. Suddenly so many things about this child made sense. It was coming across like they were great at serving and kindness, yet it was really a fear of not wanting to upset me. Ugh. We broke agreement with the lie and asked Jesus for His truth. I had them sit in front of me and prophetically hand over the responsibility of managing my emotions back over to me. I handed back their God-given right to be a child, make mistakes, and learn from them. I prayed over them that Holy Spirit would erase that memory from her mind whenever she saw me having emotions, and it would no longer be an association or trigger. We hugged for a very long time. I invited them to go do something that would bring them great joy because joy resets brain chemicals, and joy is warfare.
Parents, I made a mess by not managing my emotions well, and here we are YEARS later, and that single event is still affecting my child. But this is what I want you to hear – #1. I do not partner with condemnation or accusation. I am on a journey. I make messes, too. God is still deep at work with me through my own journey of learning more and more how to be His daughter. I already asked for forgiveness when the event happened, and I am forgiven. I cannot and do not allow the enemy to spank me for what Jesus has already paid the price for (someone needed to hear that!). #2. THIS lie would have come up in my child’s future marriage when their spouse got upset with them or when they became a parent. It would have created bad fruit, and finally, they would have gone to someone for help, and what would Jesus have shown them? That when they were younger, their mother didn’t manage her emotions well, which created a lie.
THE FACT THAT WE CAN RESOLVE THIS **IN** CHILDHOOD IS HEAVEN ON EARTH. I told them when they went to bed, “I am SO glad you made a mess today because Jesus used it to reveal something so deep inside your heart, and today you got set free from a lie that would have shaped your life.”
Want to learn more? Order your copy of Heart Splinters – Resolving Childhood Owies In Childhood. Read it together as a family. Learn the tools of heaven together. Heart Splinters BOOK – Let the Children Fly
Ask, “Jesus, what lies am I believing about my parenting?” I am fairly certain I know your response. No, I am not a mind reader, but I do know that the enemy throws out these seeds to all parents, hoping to get us to partner with them because it may feel or sound true. The lie you believe about your parenting most likely sounds something like the following: I am ruining my children. I am not enough. My child will grow up to hate me. I do not have what it takes.
Friends, the enemy is a liar, and you ARE enough. Not because of you, but because GOD gave you your child, and He trusts Himself to work all things out (even your shortcomings, wounds, and messes). When a parent partners with this lie, he is taking out two generations in one because a parent who believes they aren’t enough will act like they aren’t enough. If you struggle with the lie that you aren’t enough, are ruining your child, or don’t have what it takes, write the lie out and destroy it (burn it, trash it, shred it, stomp on it, flush it or rip it). THEN ask, “Jesus, what is Your truth about my parenting?” The next time the enemy throws that lie at you, counter it with what Jesus said.
My daughter woke up early with me, so we went on a date to grab drive-thru coffee and ended up at the bookstore. I noticed a book about the lies young girls believe and handed it to her. She spent a great deal of time browsing the contents and finally put the book down. I asked her why, and she said, “Because I don’t believe lies.” There was such an anointing on what she said. She was not saying she has never believed a lie, nor was she saying she is 100% lie-free, but she was right to say she doesn’t believe lies. I have taught my kids what lies feel like, and they have begun to self-govern when lies are being entertained in their minds. Lies always remove your peace, make your mind spin like crazy, and create feelings of anxiety, worry, and stress in your heart. When my children are feeling this, they know how to ask, “Jesus, what lies am I believing?” and they know how to ask Him for His truth. Can you imagine what this generation would look like if they knew how to stomp on the lies that come to steal, kill and destroy?
Childhood owies can turn into adult-sized wounds. Childhood lies can turn into adult strongholds. Childhood offenses can turn into adult bitterness.
The goal is to remove the owie before it becomes a life-threatening spiritual wound! I call these owies, heart splinters. Have you ever taken a splinter out of a child’s finger? You surely do not want to do it in public! They yell and scream and act like you are cutting off their finger. But once it is out, they run off and play as if nothing happened. Have you ever tried to remove a heart splinter that has been stuck for years from an adult? While they may have a smile on their face, they will protect that wounded site at all costs. Even attempting to touch it will cause pain, as the tiny splinter now has a blanket of inflammation and infection around it. Can you see the difference between how a child deals with the pain versus a grown adult? What does a child with a splinter in their heart look like? They act out, scream, bully their siblings, yell, disobey, pinch, overeat, refuse to eat, hit, kick, cause trouble with siblings, have nightmares, they retreat, slam doors, yell “I hate you,” cry, are rude, are mean and are disrespectful! This is why it is so vital to raise up parents who can discern what is going on beneath the surface of their child’s outbursts. You are the one who knows what is normal for your child. You are the one who knows when they are acting out from being hungry, tired, or when it appears “out of the blue.” You have known their cry since they were first ushered into your arms. You are the one God entrusted to listen to them. You are their mama/daddy, their advocate, their teacher and helper! Unresolved heart splinters create mental, emotional and physical isolation which is the breeding ground for the enemy to whisper lies.
A young mom texted me, desperate for some help. She began to tell me that while shopping, her daughter wanted a particular toy. It was quite expensive, and the mom said no. The daughter became so unglued that the mother had to carry her out of the store. The entire way home she was trashing the car, throwing things and screaming. When they got home, her tantrum intensified, and she drew blood from her mother’s arms while she attempted to get her up the stairs and into her room for a time out. The mom was beside herself as her daughter had never acted this badly before, and she desperately wanted to know what to do. I shared with her that there was a “heart splinter” and that we just needed to partner with Holy Spirit to discern if it was a hurt, lie or offense was so that we could remove the splinter that was causing her heart so much pain and agitation. I encouraged the mom to bring a sheet of paper and crayons to her very distraught daughter and encourage her in a very soft voice to draw what was going on (children can articulate their heart better through drawing than they can by talking). Almost immediately, the daughter calmed down and picked up a crayon. The mom was texting me while the daughter was drawing a picture about her school from SIX months ago. The mom was asking how in the world she was supposed to know what happened that long ago. I encouraged her to relax and let Holy Spirit lead her daughter to freedom. We weren’t looking for the details of an event; facts do not set us free. We were looking for the hurt, lie or offense. Holy Spirit is our HELPER, and we need to give Him room to do His job. She began to draw a picture of a day when she got in trouble for misbehaving. Most people are trained to deal with the behavior or acting out, but God looks at the heart, so we need to question WHY she was acting out. What caused the sudden change in behavior that day that was so drastic she got in trouble for it? If you want to bring your child back into alignment, you must go a wee bit deeper and not just react to the outward behavior. Even if the child doesn’t know, we can ask Jesus because He was there. The mom helped the daughter ask Jesus what was going on in her heart when she got in trouble. He wants the truth out more than we do! She then drew a picture of being at her dad’s house the night before. Her daddy failed to protect her and let her eyes see things on TV that scared her and made her feel unsafe. BINGO! So why the outburst of behavior six months later? Because there was a splinter in her heart of hurt (and fear), and when the mom said no to the toy that she really wanted, it pushed the splinter down further and it hurt. Can you guess what the daughter’s love language is? Yes, gifts. We don’t need to fuss or worry about how it all unfolds. Do we really think that the enemy plays fair and by the rules? Resist the urge to have it all make perfect sense. Just be led by the Spirit and He will show you the root cause. Now that we knew what was going on, I walked the mom through how to lead the daughter to #1. forgive her dad for not protecting her. Then they #2. asked Jesus where He was that day and then followed up with the greatest question we can ask Him in our time of distress: #3. They asked Jesus the question, “Jesus, how do You feel about me?” Nothing stomps on the enemy’s head more than finding out Jesus’ feelings about someone because His view is always full of truth, love, and life. The mom texted five minutes later saying she had her sweet daughter back.
This precious little girl was acting out the heart splinter the next day in school, and the school disciplined her for her behavior but failed to see she needed protection to feel safe again. That put her in emotional isolation, and that is where she becomes susceptible to the enemy’s lies. Picture the mom spanking, yelling, isolating, punishing, and disciplining the child into obedience. Was that ever really the issue? Would heaven do that to us when we are afraid or feel unsafe? We treat children like they are in blatant sin and punish them when what they really need is HELP! There is a time and place for corrective discipline, but when we use it at the wrong time, it can push the splinter in even deeper. Do not partner with condemnation after reading this. We have all done it, and it has been done to us many times. The point isn’t to pass blame; the point is to praise God for bringing us into a deeper revelation that there is a better way. This is the epitome of what Let the Children Fly is all about. I am passionate about empowering parents to help their children with real tools to resolve these heart splinters IN childhood!
I encourage you to come and get the tools you need to be empowered, equipped and trained further in your parenting JOURNEY. Sign up here: Journey – ONLINE CLASS – Let the Children Fly
Testimony from a mom who took our online Kingdom parenting class years ago. What I love about this is that God was putting seeds deep inside of her when her children were so little and grew them in His timing for her time of need.
She shared: “In the middle of taking your class, I didn’t know how I could use the tools you taught at the time, as they were just two and three years old. But now that they are four and five, I am starting to see the breakthroughs happen, and it’s such a blessing to be able to touch the heart splinters and have Jesus take care of them now than years from now. Lisa, thank you for choosing Jesus when it felt like all hope was lost many years ago!!!! I am a work in progress, but I am so grateful for your ministry!!!”
I am not seeking to offend anyone with this, nor am I turning this into a debate, but I believe that the following story is KEY to understanding the NECESSITY of communicating LOVE to our children.
Years ago, I led a small group with a friend I had known for years. I adored him and felt like he was my brother. One day he announced to me that he struggled with same-sex thoughts. I was dumbfounded; how could a man who loved and obeyed Jesus struggle with something so profoundly and I did not know of it before as his friend? Something in my heart demanded a breakthrough to understand his journey. I remember him telling me that his mom and dad were the best parents ever and that they loved their four kids passionately. The dad, however, never spoke his love language. The other kids shared the language of quality time, and the dad was excellent at that, but my friend’s language was touch, and his dad was not a touchy-feely kind of guy. He explained that as a child, he longed to be held, touched, kissed, patted on the back – just touched by his dad – and he never got it. He explained how he was almost obsessed with being touched by a man as a child. When he entered his hormonal teen years, he would find himself fantasizing, not about sex with another male, but about a man’s strong arms or big chest and what it would feel like to embrace them. The enemy will use anything, and soon, as his hormones were raging, confusion began to wage war, and he found himself moving inch-by-inch into sexual thoughts about another man. At that point, he had never acted on it, but it was a daily battle to control his longing to be held and touched by a man.
Do you want to know what the saddest thing about this story is? Think about those struggling with these desires, and what happens to a person when they finally share their deepest secret with the parent from whom they long for love? They get rejected and stamped as unacceptable. And guess what that fuels? Their need and longing for love. Love matters!
I wholeheartedly agree with what this mom in class has to share about speaking identity over her child.
“I just love all the ideas for teachable moments! My parents, probably my mom mostly, would always say positive things to me, but it never came back to God. When you think it’s just your mom’s opinion, it’s easy to dismiss the validity, but knowing who we are to God is breathtaking. Having that strong foundation of being able to call out the lies so easily because I know the truth would have dramatically changed my life. I spent too much time believing those lies, and my identity has been weak. I pray that God will lead me to be the parent that can call out the good as beautiful gifts from Jesus and also call out the lies from the enemy so we can throw them out!”
I was really hurt by a friend years ago. I had to see this person week after week, and they were not kind. It is super challenging to be in Church and up front doing ministry when someone has an offense against you and won’t let it go. I finally went to a spiritual leader and asked for help. He said, “Pray that she radically encounters the love of the Father.” Can I just admit that I was taken back by his counsel. Really? Pray she gets blessed despite the ongoing pain she has inflicted on me? I wasn’t sure I was that mature or even loved her enough to pray that. He said, “Lisa, the reason why she is hurting you so badly and acting so immature is because she has not encountered the Father in that area of her life. Pray that God’s love washes over that part of her so that she can become a Daughter.” I began to pray that prayer, and we were soon reconciled.
Prayer works. And it is a powerful thing when you partner with God and pray based on the things He allowed you to see and experience with others. You start going into the heavenlies on their behalf and intercession on their behalf – you do warfare for them. You declare healing and victory over them.
Let’s talk about JUDGEMENTS. Judgments are when we jump in the judge’s seat and determine the verdict about someone. When we say, “They are controlling,” we are judging them. While being discerning and aware of how people’s choices affect us is good, we are never called to act as judges. Maybe that person is ‘controlling’ because they were orphaned as a child and have never learned to depend upon someone else. Perhaps they are controlling because they are rooted in fear and need to be delivered. God judges us based on our heart and story, not our outward appearance. Here is the issue with judgments. When we judge someone, we condemn them with our words (think of how prophecy unlocks and frees a person – judgments bind and lock a person up). The Bible says when we walk around as judges, we are binding OURSELVES to the very thing we are judging. That is why children who judge their father for being an alcoholic grow up to marry one. Or the girl who judges her grandma for being overweight and struggles with her issues.
HeartWork – Get a piece of paper and write down your JUDGEMENTS against your dad, mom, siblings, and even your children and friends. Go deep and allow Jesus to show you where you are holding onto judgments against someone. Ask Jesus to forgive you for holding them in judgment. Break agreement with the judgment over that person. Rip up the paper and declare God’s truth over their lives. Children can do this with their parents and siblings, too.
Hebrews 12:15 – “See to it that no one falls short of the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many.”