Ask, “Jesus, how do You feel about me right now?” Please write it down. You can’t listen to lies about your worth when you know what the Creator of the universe says about you.
LET’S ASK JESUS
When I was teaching the children about the prophetic, I asked the kids to ask Papa what He wanted to say to the front desk gal at the doctor’s office. Kids barely recalled who she was, but were confident God knew her, and we asked anyway. One got “God’s not mad at you,” another got “It’s not your fault.” The youngest one just drew a picture of a dog. And another got a picture of a present with the message, “Something good is coming your way soon.” I wasn’t sure if I should release the words since they seemed a little out there, but I felt God was telling her it was okay. When they arrived, she was away from her desk, but her computer screen had a picture of her and a dog. When she returned, they asked her if that was her dog, and she started crying. I felt led to share the prophetic cards, and then the lady shared that something awful happened to the dog, and she felt like it was her fault and shouldn’t be trusted with another dog. The cards meant a lot to her hurting heart and removed the guilt. Our flowing in the prophetic as a family has allowed us to be the light to those around us.
There is no special spiritual gift of hearing God. It comes with the package of becoming a Son and Daughter. You may need to learn how to strengthen your spiritual muscle of hearing (like worship, reading the Word, and prayer), but your spiritual ears work just fine.
Years ago, when I was getting ready to put the house on the market, there was a ton of work to do. Three times I asked my son (then 7) if he had picked up his room, and three times he said it was perfectly clean. I was already tired and exhausted and felt like the weight of the world was on my shoulders. I walked down into his room and stopped dead in my tracks. Legos – everywhere! Upon further investigation, I discovered a week’s worth of perfectly clean clothes stuffed in the most bizarre places. I came unglued. I unleashed my mounting frustration on him and ‘cursed’ him – not with swear words, but by calling out things that were not a part of his identity. I was saying things like, “You are making my life so hard,” “You don’t care how hard I am working,” “You always do this,” “You never clean your room…” Lies full of anger.
In the midst of my emotional release, Holy Spirit told me to STOP and go upstairs. It was so strong that I simply zipped my mouth mid-sentence and walked out. I got upstairs and lamented to God in my pity party about being a single mom having to do it ALL by myself, plus homeschooling, plus selling the house, plus, plus, plus, plus. Finally, the anger gave way to tears, and I needed to realign myself with the truth that I was NOT alone, that God was still providing and caring for me, that I had permission to rest and know that my Father radically loves me! I know enough about inner healing to know I just sliced my son’s heart pretty good and needed to make it right with him ASAP. I went down to his room, where he was faithfully cleaning his Legos, and told him with tears how sorry I was. His response was, “Oh, that’s okay, Mom.” I made him stand up and put my hands on his shoulders, and told him that it wasn’t okay that I, or anyone else, spoke to him like that and that I was wrong. His response? “Don’t worry about it, Mom. I still love you.” His response confused me as it didn’t match the scene a few moments ago. He said these powerful, life-changing words with tears in his eyes. He said, “Oh, Mom, you don’t get it. What you said hurt my heart so bad, but when you were walking up the stairs, I asked Jesus what He wanted me to know, and He said, ‘Don’t listen to her,’ so I just threw out your words.” I had trained and then practiced and practiced with my children going to Jesus, and now, when it was ME causing the hurt, he knew how to take it to Jesus and get the healing he needed without me! Equipping our children to hear His voice and work through hurts, lies, and offenses is, in my opinion, the greatest tool for success you can ever give your child in today’s world. I encourage you – MASTER this over time!
Years ago, my world was falling apart as my marriage ended. I was responsible for the lives of four little ones, and all of the fears and unknowns made it difficult to breathe sometimes. Yet, despite the chaos around me, this insane hunger was starting to rumble inside me. I was desperate to teach my children who their Father was and began to long for them to hear and know Him through experience, not just head knowledge. At the time, I wasn’t in a church that supported children playing in the Kingdom, and my religious mind told me they were too young for such complicated spiritual matters. Yet my heart and soul were exploding with desire. I longed for the day they would be mature enough to participate in the Kingdom.
We were all down in Denver eating shelled peanuts by the river. Lauren, then five years old, asked if she could feed the squirrels. Suddenly, to my surprise, I heard myself say, “I do not know if it is a good idea; go ask Jesus.” I admit I had zero faith that she could do it. A few seconds later, she jumped off the chair to play. To know Lauren is to know that she is quite strong and bright and will repeatedly ask and even repackage her question until she gets the desired answer. She doesn’t just let things go and run off and play without getting her answer. I called her back and inquired if she had asked Jesus or not, and what she said rocked my world to the core. She said, “Oh yeah, He said it wouldn’t be a good idea,” and again, she bounced off to play. For me, at that moment, the world stopped. Tears streamed down my face as I realized my baby had just heard the God of the universe speak to her. I knew at that moment that I was not a single parent but that my children have a Father who is eager to parent them. I took a mental snapshot of what just happened and vowed to the Lord that I would spend the rest of my days on earth tuning my children’s ears to His voice.
Pray (out loud) – “Father, open my eyes to see my children the way You do. I invite You to flip, change, arrange or rearrange any old religious mindsets that do not align with You! Father, teach me to be a teacher of the next generation. I take back ownership of MY home and declare that it will be a place of peace, rest, and connection. It is through hearing You that I really know You and begin to trust You. Bless my parenting journey, and in all I do, may I lead them to You – a loving, caring, and involved Father. Help me lead them to listen well. Amen.”
As a family, sit and ask, “Jesus, what do You want for your birthday this year?” You might be surprised to learn what everyone hears. Doing this as a family creates connection, unity, and entering His Presence together. Let’s Ask Jesus!
Help children grow in using their spiritual muscles of hearing their Father.
We had ministry students who would come to our home once a week. Our sweet Laura walked in and told us about a friend of a friend who was staying at their house from London. She was telling them about school and that once a week they are with our family. He says, “OH, Lisa Max, doesn’t she have an Airbnb?” and grabs his Bible and pulls out a prophetic card from Ellie from years ago. Teaching and training our children to love those around us bears lasting fruit because it is GOD’S heart we are releasing over them.
Get out your journal and encounter your Father. Ask Him what He wants you to ask Him.
Self-rejection is lie-based thinking and often starts in childhood when life circumstances ‘prove’ the lie to be true. Children can partner with lies about themselves, such as, “I am fat.” “I am a loser.” “No one likes me.” “I am a mistake.” My face is ugly.” “I am too small to ever be good at sports.” “I am not acceptable.” “_____ disqualifies me from ever fully belonging.” “I will never measure up to my big brother.” “If I were a boy, my dad would accept me.” These are lies that feel true because the circumstances around them serve as evidence. They then partner with the lie as if it were the truth, giving the lie a legal right to influence them. Lies are just thoughts, but what makes them so damaging is that our thoughts and beliefs dictate our behavior. Proverbs 23:7. All of the above statements are LIES. When a child believes a lie about themselves, it is like a splinter in their heart, and they begin to act it out because it is NOT supposed to be there. If all we see is their outward behavior and aren’t digging a little deeper into the WHY of the behavior, we can serve to push the heart splinter in further. We want the lie out, not for it to be masked with perfect behavior. The less-than-pleasant acting out is pointing to the splinter that needs attention. This is not a parenting formula or 1,2,3 step program; it is about PARTNERING WITH THEIR CREATOR, who knows exactly how to search their heart and reveal what is going on. Say Johnny comes home, slams down his backpack, and declares, “I hate math!”. Parents often rush to correct little Johnny that we don’t use the word ‘hate.’ Instead, perhaps we could pull on the rope a bit more and discover what is going on underneath his newfound passion for hating math. “Buddy, why do you hate math?” and he says, “Ms. Jones is mean.” Keep pulling on the rope with validation and questions, “Oh no, how is Ms. Jones mean?” “She called on me today and I got the answer wrong and the whole class laughed at me. I am so stupid.” BAM! There is the lie. Hating math wasn’t agitating his heart; the lie of “I am stupid” was. Again, this is where parents want to rush in and remind Johnny of his intelligence, but the lie is not in his mind; it is in his heart. This is where he needs an ENCOUNTER with His Father to remove the lie. While *I* know the truth that God didn’t make him stupid, that is *his* truth. So, I ask if we can ask Jesus for his truth (after, of course, we have walked through forgiving the teacher for putting him in a position that made him feel vulnerable and unsafe and his peers for laughing at him). Jesus always shows up with His PEACE and TRUTH, which is what sets us free!! This is where parenting becomes a partnership with their Creator and where God takes what the enemy meant to harm and uses it for GOOD! The world has yet to see a generation who grabs hold of the hurts, lies, and offenses in childhood and destroys them IN childhood. His heart SHOULD be agitated if the enemy is whispering lies about his identity. His behavior and less-than-ideal vocabulary about ‘hating’ math were simply signs pointing to the heart splinter that was speaking a lie about his identity. A child who has never been intentionally taught the TRUTH of who they are will have an easier time biting the bait of lies about their worth and value. As parents, we have the incredible honor of teaching our children who they are and building them up in His truth. Identity focuses on who God says they are – worthy, valuable, important, lovable, belong, etc. – and not just what they do, such as good grades, sports, or excellent outward behavior.
So let’s review: A child who is partnering with turning on themselves is believing a LIE. A child who believes a LIE will act it out with less-than-ideal behaviors because the heart splinter is agitating their heart. You can pull on the rope with validations and questions to be on the lookout for a HURT, LIE, or OFFENSE. Once you identify the hurt, lie, or offense, you help your child walk through forgiveness and then ask Jesus for His truth. We can help children resolve childhood issues IN childhood so that childhood owies don’t become adult-sized woundedness, childhood lies don’t become adult-sized strongholds, and childhood offenses don’t become adult-sized bitterness. Look for ways to intentionally speak the truth over your children about who they are. “Do you know that God loves you even when you mess up?” “You are so important to God; He even knows the number of hairs on your head.” “God created you to look like Him.” “God wants you on His team.” “This family wouldn’t be the same without you.” “You are perfect just the way you are.” “Know what I love most about you? EVERYTHING!” I declare the lies revealed and TRUTH to reign in your homes!
A father in class shares: “This thing is working, man!! Last night our kids got into it; it ended with our daughter crying and son trying to defend himself. I asked him what had happened, and he told me everything that had happened except leaving out what he had done. Instead of continuing to question him for the truth, Holy Spirit told me to tell him to go to his room and ask Jesus what happened. Five minutes later, he came back, and this time he told me the entire story, including his portion of it! Then I asked him what did Jesus say, and he said, ‘Jesus told me to talk to her instead of pushing her and making her fall.’ Yay!”