GOD-GIVEN AUTHORITY

GOD-GIVEN AUTHORITY

Giving up control-based parenting does not mean giving up your God-given authority. It does not mean the child is in control, nor does it mean they get to make the decisions. I am not sure which is worse – a parent who partners with the spirit of control or a parent who allows the child to be in control.

WORDS MATTER

John 10:10 shares that the enemy comes to steal, kill, and destroy, while Jesus came to overcome and bring life. Your WORDS decide which side you want to camp in.

I DECLARE…

I DECLARE we WILL receive the KEYS of heaven to help this generation navigate the sexual perversion attacking their future marriage bed, gender, identity, and purity. Jesus was in hell for three days collecting the KEYS we need for TODAY, and I am determined to hold them in my hands. The battle feels heavy for many parents in this area, but I DECLARE the keys will prove that HIS yoke is light. I DECLARE that this generation will come out from under the burden of sexual attacks and EXPOSE the spirit behind it for what it is. I DECLARE not only will they be victorious in their personal life but will rise up and defeat the enemy in the lives of those around them. If God created sex and called it GOOD, then He has a PLAN to help this generation steward it well.

STOP!

I was once at the prayer house, and the worship song captivated me the moment I walked in. I nestled into my chair, closed my eyes, and felt so engulfed in His presence. Suddenly, out of nowhere, a weed wacker appeared so loud it crowded out the music. The atmosphere shifted in the room. Grrrrr. Grrrrr. Grrrrr. Suddenly it stopped, and again I found that sweet spot with the Lord. Grrrrr. Grrrrr. Grrrrr. Once again, its presence dominated. This went on for several moments. Going from the peace of His presence to the annoying revving of a machine. I was growing agitated when I heard the Lord say, “Get up, open the door, and command that they stop.” I realized at that moment the “Grrrrr” was being used by God to show me something. He continued to say, “There are things crowding out your worship and focus on Me. You have authority over the noise.” Instantly I knew what He meant, and I took authority over the mental noise that I was choosing to listen to.

If your thought life doesn’t produce peace, joy, love, and acceptance, then it is nothing more than a “Grrrrr” in the spirit realm. You have the authority to command it to cease.

HALLOWEEN

If you take it to extremes, do we want our children playing with darkness by dressing up pretending to be devils and witches? On the flip side, do we want them to hide in the basement with the lights off on Halloween in fear of the night? Both are a little extreme. I personally chose to guard my children’s mental chalkboards when they were younger. I explained that some people think pretending to be a witch is fun, while we do not. I explained why. I also told them that GOD made the seasons and the harvest, and that is what we celebrate. We carve pumpkins, eat way too much candy corn, and love to dress up, but our heart is celebrating God’s creation, not partnering with the demonic. My kids have not chosen to go Trick-or-Treating in the past, even when given the chance. I believe they made that choice because they know by experience that God’s Kingdom is life-giving and fun, and the other kingdom doesn’t feel so good. It is so important to walk in balance with our beliefs. If we teach our children to fear the junk we see this time of year, we are falling into the trap of the enemy. The demonic likes to go on joy rides and see who they can taunt. If we teach our children to fear it, then it becomes a fun game for the darkness to watch your child jump. I take the game out of it by simply teaching them and equipping them with TRUTH. I am super sensitive to atmospheres, and there is junk hanging around that stuff in the spiritual realm – that is why it is there! BUT I have power and authority over that. When they were younger, this was the time of year when the nightmares would increase. Instead of coming to me all upset in the middle of the night, they would wake me up and say, “Mommy, will you pray for my chalkboard? I saw something at the store, and it is scaring me.” They knew the fear they were feeling was from something they were exposed to and saw with their eyes. If we were to walk by something and my child began to partner with fear or made comments about it, I would stop and address it. I would make sure they had a proper understanding of it and not allow it to create fear for them. It isn’t the decoration of bloody body parts that is bad – it’s just plastic! A big part of this is simply addressing the principle behind it as ‘not of God’ and asking, “Is that what you want to partner with?” Skeletons can be scary, but I would tell the kids, “It’s just bones, and God made bones. We all have bones, but what makes them not good in this situation is that people interact with and focus on death, and we believe God wants us to focus on that which is alive.” When you decorate your house with demonic junk or let your children dress up as devils and witches, you are inviting spirits in, and it will take whatever small window of opportunity and use it. Have you seen America’s Funniest videos where a parent dresses the child up in a witch or devil outfit and then turns the camera on where they see themselves for the first time in the mirror? They aren’t afraid, they are terrorized. Or the videos of dads dressing up like the Texas Chainsaw Massacre and the young boy nearly wet his pants. There is fun joking around, and then there is fear-based junk that is not something I want to introduce my child to.

I do not want to give the enemy a foothold anywhere in my home. As for me and my home, we serve the Lord – His power, His Spirit, His love, His Kingdom! I wonder what people would think of me if I allowed my children to see all of the photos going around Facebook or the news. Don’t child psychologists warn against children being exposed to that? And yet a trip down the aisle of Michael’s is loaded with beheading, body parts, grandma holding up two decapitated heads with a smile on her face and half mangled bodies. Oh yeah, it’s ‘just’ Halloween! Don’t get me wrong, I am not a party pooper, but that is a little extreme, even for my adult eyes. I will also note that we baffle with our mouths wide open at how people can do such horrible acts and then go home and eat dinner. They are capable of doing it because it isn’t their first experience. They are desensitized to it. They have been inundated with images as part of their training so that it isn’t a shock or big deal when the real thing happens. That is the seduction and grooming process of the enemy. Be led by the Spirit and then walk in freedom!

LET’S ASK JESUS

“Jesus, in what area do You want me to exercise the authority You have given me through the Cross? Will You please show me what it looks like to use my authority in that situation?”

Gather as a family in the living room, in the car, at the dinner table, or bedtime, and ask Jesus together. This is so empowering for children because they get to witness how God communicates with you, which increases their faith, and together you get to encounter Him. Spiritual hearing is a muscle that is strengthened by worshiping and praying. The more you do it, the stronger you become at it.

WITCHCRAFT

One day I had a piercing headache that made me sick to my stomach. It was an unusual headache. I said a few hours later, “I don’t think this is a headache. It feels like witchcraft.” The things in the spirit can affect your mind, body, and emotions. I couldn’t discern where it was coming from, but the moment I exercised my authority over it, the headache went away. The following night the girls asked to speak to me. Emma was clearly upset, and they began to show me the book they were required to read for school. It included: a 12-year-old wanting a relationship with a married man, “bashing my parent’s head against the wall until I see their blood,” talking to the dead, putting curses on people, violent murder, using the words “witchcraft, spells, and curses.”

I told her she could stop with the list as I understood enough. They are required to spend six weeks studying this book, writing about it, and discussing it daily. This is NOT life-giving. This is NOT appropriate entertainment for minors. This is NOT what I send my children to school to learn. To call this ‘American Literature’ is an insult to our history’s scores of talented writers. It is not a matter of ‘being able to handle it.’ It is a matter of NOT opening the door because once the door is opened, we give the enemy a legal right (foothold) to influence us, and his agenda is always to steal, kill, and destroy.

Parents, do your homework! Pay attention to what your children are learning and being taught.

AUTHORITY OVER ATMOSTPHERES

There is the natural realm – all things on earth. There is the heavenly realm – all things in heaven. There is also the unseen spiritual realm that operates between the two. Have you ever walked into a room or house and felt so much love? Have you ever gone somewhere, and fear met you at the door? Someone is releasing that into the atmosphere, and you are coming into that presence. Sometimes children walk into an atmosphere and react as if it is coming from them. Those most sensitive to feeling atmospheres are often described as ‘flip of a switch’ since they can be fine one moment and a ball of emotions the next. Chances are, they walked into the atmosphere. The sensitivity to atmospheres is generally a sign they have the gift of discernment, but until one understands how to use it, they often feel like they are tossed against the waves of atmospheres all around them. I often stop and ask, “What are you feeling in the atmosphere right now?” They never cease to amaze me at how strongly they feel JUNK! We simply take authority over it. We do this with certain people, in a new situation, over their classrooms, at Wal-Mart, after an interaction with a rude person, at a restaurant, etc. I am training them to first discern the atmosphere and then second to use their authority over it.

TEACHING CHILDREN TO OVERCOME FEAR WITH THEIR AUTHORITY

“I had been wondering if what I was teaching my 18-month-old was even working. Over the last month, I have noticed he walks into the room when the light is off and starts to cry. He runs to me and says, ‘Momma, it’s dark. I am scared.’ As he was running away, something rose up within me, and I told him to go back in there and tell the dark, ‘I AM NOT AFRAID,’ and I stomped my foot down. We did this for a whole month. He would cry, and I would remind him, and then he would tell the dark he wasn’t afraid and walk in and grab a toy. Finally, I turned the lights on for him after he walked through the door. But this morning, he walked into the dark living room, and I heard him say all on his own and stomp his feet, ‘I AM NOT AFRAID!’ He came to me so proud, stomping his feet, and said, ‘I am not afraid.’ Needless to say, we had a party in the kitchen when he told me this. Lisa, I thought you should hear this… What you do for parents even when their kids are too young to comprehend. They do, and I’m so grateful to see my son stomp on the floor to say he is not afraid!”

GIVING CHOICES

I am all about empowering children, as my ministry is based on equipping parents on how to empower their children. However, I do not believe in empowering them BEFORE the child has first learned to submit. If you are empowering your young child by offering them a choice with everything you are teaching them, they are the master of their own world, which ultimately is not entirely true. Yes, they alone control themselves, but that doesn’t mean they are not accountable to an authority greater than themselves. Some things need to be submitted to, such as our relationship with God, our desires, Holy Spirit’s leading, stop signs, not playing in the street, harming another human, moral compass, relationships, righteousness, and so forth. We may be free to do as we choose, but that does not mean we want to raise children who are only motivated to respond when they are in control. I see parents of little ones so eager to empower their children. Yet, they are missing out on the required seasons of laying the foundation of character training and intentionally teaching children to submit to their authority. This is raising children who are defiant and full of entitlement.

Let me share an example: My daughter, who is a naturally born confident leader, went to babysit for a family. She returned and declared she would never do that again because the kids never listened to her. I encouraged another attempt. She again came through the door and stated the same thing. Not so eager to let her miss this golden opportunity to grow in her capacity to lead, I made her do it one more time. But this time, she came through the door and was most upset. I honestly could not figure out what was happening because this was a wonderful family. Shortly after, the mom asked me for a playdate, and we met at the park. Her toddler made a mess, and she asked, “Do you want a spanking now or a time out when we get home?” Instantly, I knew the problem my daughter was facing. When we got home, I asked her if she gave the kids a choice of when to go to bed. I asked if she gave them a choice of PJs. If she empowered them to decide if they wanted to brush their teeth or read their book first. My daughter was frustrated and said, “No, I just did what the mom told me to do with them, and they wouldn’t listen to a single thing I said.”

The problem was that she didn’t offer them choices, and the only way the child knew how to respond to authority was if they were in complete control of the option. This only works if, everywhere they go, people offer them choices to feel powerful, but that is not how the world is set up. Ultimately this is not true empowerment; this is entitlement. It is overwhelming to a small child who doesn’t even have the total brain capacity to always be in the driver’s seat. They are not orphans, but children set in families with parents who make healthy choices on their behalf.

A child must endure some training at home that establishes authority and how to surrender their will by trusting those God has given to care for them. The toddler years are when this is established and skipping this season and jumping right to empowerment will reap the fruit that will give parents a run for their money down the road. The definition of empowering means to give (someone) the authority or power to do something. If you give children something they do not know how to use properly, it is like giving a baby food before they know how to chew or a car before they know how to drive. We set our children up for messy accidents when we empower them before they are ready.

Do I believe in giving children space to make choices? YES! Do I believe in doing it before they have been first taught to trust your leadership? Not at all. Perhaps we can move away from the ‘do as I say’ control-based parenting and yet not swing so far to the other side where we skip some of the crucial character development that comes with being able to carry the weight of being truly empowered.

FLIPPING ATMOSPHERES

In the days leading up to the day I wrote this lesson, I was attacked endlessly. At the eleventh hour, I took some time in my room. All I could do was lie on my bed feeling all alone, completely consumed, and like I was sinking deeper and deeper into a pit. Ever been there? I eventually reached a dangerously low place in the pit and realized if I did not fight my way out, I might not get out. I knew from experience that this was never a good place to be. So, I texted a handful of prayer warriors I knew who would bombard the heavenlies on my behalf. I called a friend with whom I could be real and messy. I talked to my mentor and bared it all to her. Then, the revelation breakthrough came: I HAVE AUTHORITY OVER THIS! That which kills, steals, and destroys will always be around me, but within me is the ability to release that which brings life, joy, and blessings!

However, the key to releasing it is a VERB! We must ‘do’ something about the situations around us, not in the natural but in the spiritual realm. Old, religious, spiritual mindsets disempower us by saying we can only allow ourselves to be in ‘clean environments.’ Things that are spiritually unclean, messy, or different aren’t fit for the godly. To believe these lies is to deny Jesus’ ministry on earth. The true sons of the Kingdom of God know who they are and aren’t afraid to release heaven in the areas that need Him the most. Another spiritual mindset that renders us powerless believes that God isn’t big enough, and if He wanted something done or changed, He would do it Himself. To believe this is to deny Jesus’ words on earth! He said He has all the authority and then commissioned US to go out and do ‘greater works’ than He did. Jesus never sat by passively saying, “I guess Daddy doesn’t feel like raising you, Lazarus. Sorry.” No, Jesus got His Father’s perspective, and then Jesus DID IT! He then passed that baton onto us. This is where the Kingdom gets exciting!