One of the greatest tools I have as a parent against the sex industry is to teach my children that it isn’t about laws, rules, or legalism but rather identity. People who do not know who they are will use their bodies for their worth and value. We aren’t just guarding our eyes but guarding the person who doesn’t know who they are. I often will say, “That is someone’s daughter,” or “No one taught him who he is,” and the kids have learned over time that sexual choices are rooted more in identity than in sexual behavior. Spiritual orphans use their flesh to feel worth and value. A Son and Daughter know their worth and value and can therefore manage their flesh accordingly. Don’t just read this and say AMEN. Go teach your children about it.
Orphan parents cannot raise children in the palace. They must know who they are first, and God is always eager to welcome us.
A gal shared this in class: “Wow, Lisa! God is indeed using this mentoring class to uproot some lies and hurts that were hidden in my heart that I wasn’t even aware of. Your words are so powerful, and Holy Spirit is using them to do an extreme makeover in my heart. I read your post while waiting for my daughter during her gymnastic class. Holy Spirit grabbed my heart so strongly that I had to leave the room and go outside for a good cry. I realized I had an orphan spirit because I lacked my earthly father’s affirmation. I was trying so hard to earn my Heavenly Father’s approval with my performance and constantly striving for excellence. I couldn’t contain my tears; I was crying out to Abba Father, for I knew He wanted to heal my heart and fill me with His love and grace to the overflow. I asked Father how He would do it because I saw a big giant hole in my heart, and it felt impossible to be cured. But Papa whispered the word ‘beautiful’ over and over to me. ‘I am making something beautiful in your heart.’ I may not understand it, but I believe that today He started a process of healing in my heart. And I say ‘YES’ and ‘AMEN’ to what He is doing in me.”
I recently read a post from a youth leader publicly repenting of making young girls wear one-piece swimming suits at church functions. He said it was wrong to ask a girl to cover up and be the only one responsible for managing another person’s eyes. Likewise, he mentioned that if a guy could take his shirt off, asking a girl to cover her belly was wrong. I had a few internal thoughts about the article but what has lingered with me were the 1.5K comments bantering back and forth about whose job it was to manage purity – the guys or the girls. The comments were brutal to read as people hit each other across the face with the Bible. Meanwhile, I couldn’t help but wonder why no one is looking UP. No man is going to be able to stand (naked, I might add) before the Lord and say, “My lust issue was because of her.” Likewise, no woman is going to be able to stand (also naked) before the Lord and say, “It’s my body, and I can do whatever I want.” Each male and female are accountable to Him and Him alone. A man’s purity is HIS to manage rightfully before the Lord. A woman’s body is HERS to manage rightfully before the Lord. Each will give an account for the way they stewarded it unto HIS glory, not their own. We walk in grace and freedom, not laws and rules. We walk in love and honor, not disregard and disrespect for those around us.
Christians can often see/feel the spirit behind things yet are so ill-equipped in discernment (the ability to judge well), they respond negatively to the person instead of the spirit realm. To expect acceptance would mean to violate what they are seeing. People often attack the behavior, but what they are really standing up against is the spirit that their spirit knows is not right. We hurt people when we attack them instead of helping them.
Those who have walked in isolation and believe the enemy’s whispers about their identity are fed up with believers who were powerless to help them, failed to validate the deep isolation and then demanded outward performance. If it is a spirit issue then the church should be ones to HELP and instead, we have been the ones to accuse, blame and shame.
Let me use this word picture. If a child is being tormented by a spirit of fear and reacts to it with yelling and crying the parent will FEEL the spirit in fear in operation yet they don’t always have eyes to discern (the ability to judge well), but they can feel it (and without discernment it normally riles up the parent too). Getting mad at the child, disciplining, isolating, scolding them or telling them to ‘stop’ is pointless because it isn’t just about their less than pleasant behavior, as in bad character. It is about something going on in the spirit realm that is influencing them. They need HELP to resolve the issue in the spirit realm before their behavior will change.
The enemy’s goal is outlined in John 10:10 – “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy.” He comes to STEAL community (isolation), oftentimes in our own homes, he then whispers lies to KILL their identity (who they were created to be) and then DESTROYS the thing that we all long for – community and connection.
The church should be a safe place to resolve spiritual issues, but because they have been so ill-equipped to discern the spirit and have focused solely on behavior modification, we have actually furthered the agenda of tolerance and acceptance. We have forced the world to accept what we have not been able to respond to well and help resolve. There is a time to rise up as parents and leaders in our authority, not against the child/person but the spirit behind it.
Parents need to be equipped with tools to walk in discernment when this spirit is in operation in their homes. Children who are being influenced by this spirit need HELP to resolve it. While it can surely include professional or traded help, Jesus died to give that authority and power to every believer, including parents.
I have said all along that God parents us as we parent our children. Here is another excellent example of that. My daughter is wired to need one best friend with whom she can connect deeply (just like her mama). We have known this for years, and she hasn’t quite broken out of her comfort zone yet to help foster that kind of friendship. She met someone she saw great value in and attempted to reach out to her. The person’s response was nothing short of rude and unkind. When she told me about it, I took a deep breath and began to ask Jesus for the strategy to help her walk through this. I invited her to talk to me and began asking questions. She was able to see the lack of kindness and that it could have been said better. I asked if it hurt her heart, and she said these powerful words, “Mom, how can I be hurt by someone I don’t even know? Her rudeness isn’t a reflection of my heart to reach out to her.” And then instantly, I heard God say, “Lisa, this is YOUR issue, not hers.” I hugged her, went to my room, shut the door, and processed it with the Lord. He began to show me that while I don’t feel that rejection today, that is how I felt at her age as a young 13-year-old (not so much from peers, but from family, which shaded my view of my sense of belonging anywhere I went). I don’t have the capacity to know what it feels like to be 13, endure a hard interaction and keep my identity intact. While seeing my daughter whole and rather unaffected, it ministered deeply to my own heart. I asked God to highlight and reveal to me in the days to come any time I project my teenage heart onto them and their experiences. There is going to be so much goodness coming out of these high school years, both for them and myself.
Note to parents of younger children: Going after their identity, discerning lies about their worth and value, and calling out good character when they are little PAYS OFF! All of your sowing will reap a harvest in due time.
Which one resonates the most with you and your journey? How would you answer this question? The thing I long for the most is: To be seen, to be heard, to be included/belong, and to know my contributions/gifts matter.
God wired you to NEED significance and to belong. However, how and where we get that need met is the difference between an orphan and a Son/Daughter. A spiritual orphan feels the lack of need and partners with the enemy’s voice of condemnation and accusation. But a Son/Daughter sees the need and aligns themselves with the truth God has spoken and trusts Him to meet their need in a tangible way.
Orphan – “No one sees me. I don’t belong. Something is wrong with me.”
Son/Daughter – “God, today I am feeling unseen. Thank You that You always see me. Would You please help me to feel seen today?”
We spend so much time focusing on how to be a Son or Daughter, but the only way to be a real Son or Daughter is to know you have a Father. To be a ‘good’ Son or Daughter without a deep rich connection with your Father is nothing more than performance. What makes someone a Son or Daughter is not what they do but the mere fact they have a Father.
Over the years, I have gone after making sure the kids know the following safety boundaries:
I share this often because I think it is VITAL. When my children sin/disobey/get out from under my instruction, 100% of the time Holy Spirit gives them a check or speaks to them. I want to teach them to obey HIM more than obeying me. When they were little and would hit, I would come to them and say, “How does your tummy feel?” and would help them to see that ‘bad’ feeling is Holy Spirit telling them that hitting their sibling is not good for them.
This generation NEEDS the leading of the Holy Spirit to maneuver through their world. Because we have already laid the foundation of these boundaries, when my children want to venture out into the world, I simply ask Jesus first and make sure I am feeling peace. We talk about the specific safeguards, and I send them out the door with confidence that Jesus has them, AND should anything come their way, they are prepared and empowered to handle it.
God’s design is that children would receive and experience things like belonging, being seen, heard, and valued, knowing the significance, and embracing physical touch.
When children grow up without these foundational ingredients, it creates lack, conflict, and heartbreak. HOWEVER, God has not left us orphaned. He is STILL parenting us. Yes, it is easier to receive in childhood when we learn about the world for the first time, but it is never too late to be a Son or Daughter and let the Father teach you. A great question to ask throughout your day is, “Father, how would a Son/Daughter respond to this?” Let Him parent you, teach you, and allow you to experience His goodness.
I am just going to go ahead and say it. Not all of you will have worldwide platforms.
It wasn’t that long ago when few people even dreamed about it, much less achieved it. Social media has made the world seem smaller. One YouTube video can reach the globe overnight. We have 1000’s of ‘famous’ people. We no longer live in the era of Hollywood celebrities being the only famous ones. You can be famous today without any talent. People can be famous for a single act, rebellion, or even for doing something stupid! Heck, churches can literally buy social media followers to make their churches seem bigger. Ugh!
This has shaped so many in the body of Christ and rendered them silent. God has given you internal wiring to be seen and known and to offer the world something significant. If there are unrefined places in your heart, that God-given seed will be drawn to the world’s ‘success,’ and it can create the most DISCOURAGING view that there will never be a spot for you, that your voice isn’t needed and that there is no way you could become what is inside of you.
The world is NOT your stage – your home and local community are. God has put something inside of you for the world AROUND YOU, not always for you to go around the world. Your voice, destiny, love, care, concern, mission, talent, and story IS needed, wanted, and valued, but if you think it has to be on the world platform, you will disqualify yourself before God even has a chance to develop you. He is looking for those who are faithful to what He has put inside of them, not looking for someone who is ready to be discovered. His Kingdom doesn’t work that way.
This isn’t Hollywood; this is God’s Kingdom on earth, and you play a major role. Your calling was never supposed to put YOU on the stage but to use your gifting to point to the only One worthy of the stage, Jesus.
Break up with the lie that “Someone else is already saying what I want to say,” “There isn’t enough room for me,” or “There is no way I could step out when others do it so much better.” This is an orphan speaking, not a Son/Daughter.
Chicken lines are your friends because you increase your capacity every time you deliberately choose to cross one. If you want to change the world around you, be faithful to steward what He has given you well. The Kingdom of God does not have talent scouts looking for someone to discover. You are already found and have been given the role of modeling Him to those around you through your calling.
What is ONE thing you are going to do to cross your chicken line and own what God has given YOU to do to impact the world around you?
Over the years, I have gone after making sure the kids know the following safety boundaries:
Our family rule was: No man, woman, or child had a right to touch, look or photograph their private parts, and they were not allowed to look, touch or photograph anyone else. We called it keeping ‘sexually safe’ just like I would say, “Wear your helmet to keep your head safe,” “Look both ways to keep your body safe,” or “Don’t touch the stove to keep your hands safe.”