HEAD OF THE HOUSE

HEAD OF THE HOUSE

If God is indeed the head of our household, then perhaps we should give Him more room to speak, move, and reveal Himself to each of us. He longs to be invited into any given situation and is always faithful to accept.

LET HIM LEAD!

I was able to score cheap tickets to Florida and decided I would take the kids for some R&R and splashing in the ocean before school started the following week. The following morning I woke at 3 am pondering our trip. While it ‘looked’ fun, I had no joy. I got out of bed and began to process why going to Florida was not bringing any joy whatsoever. The joy turned into NO PEACE. It wasn’t fear, but simply no peace or joy on it. The Kingdom is righteousness, peace, and joy; I have used these as my pillars to lead me. I canceled the trip.  And then I see this… A double hurricane isn’t my idea of joy either, God. Thanks for leading me so well.

Shhhhhhh! LISTEN! HE KNOWS HOW TO LEAD HIS SHEEP.

DISPENSARY VS. DEPENDENCY

How many of you could say in this hour, “I feel like I am doing everything right yet not producing the fruit that I desire”? Your A plus B is not equaling C! I confronted Hudson on his attitude towards his family after he came home from a friend’s house. I fully understand that his friends meet a profound need in this season of life, but that doesn’t mean he gets to be rude or disrespectful to us when he returns. A few hours later, he bounced back inside the house from being with his friend, full of joy and kindness. He gave me a big hug and told me he loved me. I thought he got it and was proud of him for receiving my correction. But two minutes later, he asked for a big favor. I felt slimed. He did what I told him to do and even did it ‘right,’ but his motives were for what he could get out of me, not out of genuine affection. A dispensary is a room where medicines are prepared and provided. No one ever lives there but stops by when they need something, generally to put them out of their physical or emotional misery. Dependency is the state of relying on or needing someone or something for aid, support, or help. God invites us to depend upon Him through confidence and trust in who He is. We are called to live in this continued posture with Him.  Are we doing all of the ‘right’ things in the ‘right’ way but coming to Him like a dispensary attempting to get something from Him to alleviate our pain and discomfort, or are we coming to Him out of the confidence we need Him? I am confident in this hour that God is removing the dispensary from the church and body. He is calling us into a deeper dependency upon His nature, character, and heart for us. The question is, do we really want Him or just what He can do for us? 

CLING TO RIGHTEOUSNESS

I walked through some deep betrayal years ago and wrestled it deeply with God. I had this mental picture of Jesus holding both of us on His lap, and it made me mad. This person brought me so much turmoil and pain, and I didn’t like the fact Jesus loved them so much (this isn’t my true heart, but it was a moment in my processing the pain). I finally called my mentor because it was making my heart feel unsafe with God. How in the world could He love someone who has brought so much pain? Her response was brilliant and literally shifted something so deep within me. She said, “Lisa, you do not fully understand the picture. God loves this person just as much as He does you because He created them, but God is only on the side of righteousness, and this person isn’t choosing righteousness.”

It wasn’t a matter of whose side God was on as much as it was who was on His side. It was like my hands opened, and I dropped whatever offense, pain, or fight I was holding onto and clung to righteousness. It altered decisions and outcomes dramatically. The question is not “Is God on my side?” The question is, “Are you on God’s side?”

PREPARING FOR BATTLE

I am confident of God’s leading me as my Husband, and He has been so faithful over the years. We entered the home stretch of the election war and really wanted to hear His heart and strategy for our family. We spent time just being quiet and enjoying His presence while listening to a worship song. Then I asked the question, “Jesus, is there anything specifically You want us to do to prepare for the season we are in?” The children each heard similar things regarding strategy, and it was very confirming, but Emma said, “I heard Him say that we are to stock up in our hearts, especially with JOY, because joy gives us the will to fight hard things.”

It would be impossible to be fully prepared for whatever could come our way. But stocking up on the ingredients that will help us weather any storm is essential right now. Joy releases a chemical in our brain that gives us the will to fight and endure hard things. Joy is your weapon – stock up on an arsenal of it.

YOUR JOURNEY BECOMES THEIR JOURNEY

Parents can’t help but parent out of their own journey, which often includes their own hurts, lies, and offenses. Parents who don’t know who they are can’t empower their children with who God called them to be, and this creates things that are out of alignment with His Kingdom. We don’t want to shut down in our children what needs to be awakened in us. Often, God allows our children to carry something that rubs us the wrong way. It isn’t that they are doing something wrong. It is that something needs to be healed, aligned, or brought to life in us, and God is parenting us through them. God often takes that adult child on a journey of healing, not just for their own heart, but for the family KEYS that their parents needed. It is never too late to bring healing to your family line, and sometimes it flows up the generations. Let the healing in your heart not only impact your children but your parents and grandparents too.

DO NOT PRAY AGAINST GOD

When my sweet Emma was little, she had the hardest time grasping the concept that she could not help herself to whatever she wanted in the stores. She would come home with her pockets filled with unpaid goodies. I kept trying to teach her, but it wasn’t sinking in. When I found a pair of dangling earrings, I knew I had to take things to the next level. I took her to the store and asked for the manager. I had Emma explain that she took the items and came to return them. To my utter surprise, the manager told me to relax and then looked at Emma and said, “That is okay, sweetie!” I was dumbfounded and asked the manager if she would be okay with that response if she were 15 or 55, still stealing from her store. I was sad the manager was working against what I was trying to set up and instill in my daughter. I share that story to say we must know the bigger picture of what is happening. I was a mom trying to teach my daughter the value of not stealing, but the manager spoke against it and encouraged Emma that it was no big deal. There is SO much going on in the world right now, and we must must must hear from God what He is doing and align our prayers, comments, and voice with His. We do not want to be like the manager and speak out against what He is doing. We want to partner with Him. 

May I encourage you to gather the children and spend some intentional time as a family asking: “Father, what are You doing right now?” “Holy Spirit, how do You want me to pray today?” “Jesus, will You show me what You see?” He is a good Father and knows what He is doing. Let’s partner WITH Him and align our voices with what He is doing. 

FRUITS THAT FEEDS THE GENERATIONS

God is a master at growing people for the long term and is not interested in fifteen minutes of fame. He wants fruit that will last into eternity and later generations. Fruit takes time to mature. So bless whatever is going on in your life as part of your training ground. He WILL use it for good. He promises you that.

GO PLAY

How many of you can relate to this mom in the area of PLAYING with your children? 

“The first word that came to mind that He wants me to do differently is PLAY! I am not good at playing. It’s not natural for me, but I see my kids come to life when we lighten things up and PLAY. So, Holy Spirit, come and give me a spirit of playfulness! Let me have FUN with my kids!!”

Lisa’s response: Can you sit with it and ask Him to show you what about play makes your heart so uncomfortable? This is where God uses the next generation to align and restore the current generation and what was lost. Allow Him to reveal, heal and restore the art of joyful play.

CONTROL-BASED PARENTING

I received this message from a mom taking our class. I want you to see how each of these parts are interwoven and connected. God is so good to show her what was the root of her control-based parenting. 

“Wow, I had my late night turn out so different than planned. I have followed the LTCF Facebook page and have been trying to emulate the connection parenting versus my normal controlling/disciplining parenting. I have realized how much I operate under a religious spirit and definitely want freedom from that! That revelation in itself has been so eye-opening and humbling. After I went through some forgiveness with my parents for not emulating connection (something my father still doesn’t grasp), I asked Jesus what He wanted to give me in return. As I gave my jar to Jesus, I waited in expectation for a sweet, tangible picture to come about. And the waiting got a little long for my comfort zone, so I asked again what He was showing me! Immediately I heard COMPANIONSHIP as I looked at Jesus standing close, smiling at me. I heard, ‘You are not alone, Tiffany. Let’s play.’ Immediately my stomach filled with this gaping grief, and I began to wail as a deep pain I had not known was there surfaced. The more I allowed myself to cry, the more I got clarity of a deep sense of loneliness that I believe had been there all my life and I was totally unaware of! I sat in this place for a while and felt some revelation come. I have been struggling with a wall that comes up between my oldest son (6 years old) and me these last two years. I have not been able to pinpoint it, and it has grieved my heart so much. Its presence had gotten stronger over the past year with the birth of our second son, a definite ‘world changer’ personality. I have never known how to address ‘loneliness,’ and I am so encouraged that the Lord surfaced it in my heart because I believe He revealed to me that it is something that has burdened my oldest son’s heart and has driven a wedge between his and I’s attempts at connection. I am not fully certain what’s next, but I am hungry to seek that out.”