What does a child with a splinter in their heart look like? They act out, scream, yell, disobey, withdraw, pinch, hit, kick, isolate, slam doors, demand, cause trouble with siblings, have nightmares, cry, are rude, mean, don’t care, are disrespectful, etc.! This is why it is so vital to empower parents. 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 something is out of line. You have known their cry since they were first ushered into your arms. You are the one God entrusted to listen to and care for them. When something seems out of character, ask Holy Spirit to show you what is going on inside of them. It may have little to do with their outward behavior. A child who is afraid may be acting very bossy. A child who believes the lie they are unlovable may be acting like a bully. A child who is offended may act like they don’t care. Ask Holy Spirit to show you!
WHAT DOES A HEART SPLINTER LOOK LIKE?
I get numerous messages each week from parents around the globe being bullied, attacked, and held hostage by the enemy. They are overwhelmed, scared, and feel powerless to help their children. Issues such as sexual violation, attacks on their gender, divorce, online predators, death, sickness, anger, drugs, tormenting spirit of fear, walls, runaways, disrespect, orphan mindsets, lies, hurts, offenses, bitterness, and trauma are attacking many homes. I am passionate that Jesus died for ALL of the keys, and there is nothing we endure on earth that Jesus does not have a solution and answer for, but this year feels like a tipping point for me and Let the Children Fly.
IT’S TIME! It is time to awaken parents to their God-given authority in the family. It is time to stop being bullied in the spiritual realm. It is time to give children the weapons of heaven. It is time to walk in the power Jesus died for. It is time to empower this generation with the power and authority of Christ. It is time to link arms with other parents and destroy the isolation. It is time to rise up and protect our children from the war on their identity. It is time to deal with our own childhood issues so that we do not parent from that place. It is time to stay NO MORE to the sexualization of our children. It is time to raise our voices in our children’s schools regarding sexual education. It is time to align parents as Sons and Daughters. It is time to encounter the Father as a household and build stories together. Who is coming with me? This is the year we are going to defeat the works of the devil in our family room and align our families with His power, love, and purpose.
My daughter started to cry, more like wail. I came running into the room thinking she was hurt, and she said, “He called me a boy!” I reassured her she was a girl, but the crying would not stop. I asked her what she would think if I told her she was a puppy or had purple hair. She thought that was pretty silly. Exactly! Just because someone calls you a boy doesn’t make it true. She was distraught because she accepted what he said, which didn’t fit.
Children need to learn that rejecting words spoken over them is okay. They need to be taught that not everything they hear (from others and in their minds) is true. Lies don’t feel good, make sense or bring peace because lies are demonic. Children can be empowered to say NO to lies!
Lauren greeted me one Sunday morning in her brand new (adorable) outfit, along with a scowling face. When I asked her what was wrong, she said, “I feel UGLY!” It was intense, and she was really feeling it. I simply hugged her and said, “Catch and release, sweetheart.” I have taught them they can catch those sneaky little lies that wreak havoc on our emotions and release them. I didn’t have to tell her it was a lie as her agitated heart was proof enough that it wasn’t of God. I have empowered her to RELEASE those pesky lies and not massage, embrace or feast on them. By the time we walked out the door, she was at peace again. I asked her later how she was doing, and she said, “Man, that lie hit me hard out of nowhere.”
Let’s face it – as adults, we don’t always catch and release this fast, but this is what the next generation looks like when they are intentionally taught from an early age that they can catch the lie and release it. Teach your child how to catch and release!
Like most families, we have our share of sibling issues, but something about it has always sat funny with me. It was like I could feel something working against them but could never put my finger on it. Their tones and attitudes toward each other don’t reflect the gift that they have been given. I called a family meeting and had them close their eyes. I told them we were not asking Jesus this time, nor did I want the right answer. I wanted an answer that reflected their heart. I asked them to give me thumbs up or thumbs down if they would feel something in their heart if they walked into a room and saw me in it. Everyone gave thumbs up. I asked them how their heart would feel if they saw their sister, a few thumbs halfway and one thumb down. I asked about each person, and their answers broke my heart. I was thankful for their honesty, but it pierced my heart deeply. I had them close their eyes again and asked them to give me thumbs up or down if, when they walked into a room with their peers, they felt awkward and like they didn’t belong. Each of them sheepishly put their thumb halfway or all the way down, almost surprised they were exposed to this truth of their heart. I would say all my kids are popular in that they are well-known and liked by adults and peers, yet their sense of belonging was under attack because of how they were functioning as a family. Children get their sense of belonging from siblings, not Mom and Dad. If we tolerate negative sibling connections and bullies in the living room, we are setting them up to feel isolated even amongst a crowd. I brought out the whiteboard and began to draw out our family line and how each generation has been influenced and affected by rejection. To the best of my knowledge, it started with my illegitimate great, great, great aunt who was fed rejection daily by those who called themselves family. After that, each generation hosted profound rejection between mother and child with favoritism towards one another.
I mapped out that my children will get married and have kids roughly in 2030. Their children will have children in approximately 2060, and their grandchildren will be around in 2090. Just like our ancestors of 100 years ago have affected their generational bloodline, so will they until the year 3000 – what a sobering thought. Our choices today affect future generations. We have been given a gift of life, family, and knowing Christ’s redemptive work and are called to steward it well in our lifetime. It was time to break it once and for all! We began to work as a family on our court case regarding the lack of sibling love. We argued that it violated God’s command to love each other and did not glorify His name to have such disunity. We searched for verses that backed up our case and took time to stand before Jesus, asking for forgiveness for the way we have partnered with the generation curse and allowed it to bear bad fruit. I had the children move to the same side of the room as if it were a real courtroom and had them repeat after me the court case before the Judge who judges all things. It was super powerful for all of us. One of the children heard the Judge’s gavel hit the bench, and with that, we rested our case. We put on worship music and sat in His presence together as a family. I encountered a flood of emotions as I felt the release of the conflict and was filled with His redeeming grace. Instantly I noticed a difference in the way they treated each other.
The kids and I were praying for a friend walking through some deep hurts from their church. It was painful to see them hurting over what feels so unjust. We were reminded of some of our own experiences with imperfect leaders. Interactions with those in authority shape our spiritual development. One of the kids said, “Mom, really, what’s the point of church? People can just go to Jesus on their own.” It was a real and honest statement from a child who has seen the ‘ugly’ side of the church. I was moved to tears and said, “No, no, no, child. The church is Jesus, and we come to worship Him, not man. Just because man has been imperfect in leading like Jesus doesn’t mean we turn on the church. We love, honor, and respect the church, AND we walk through hurts, disappointments, and being misunderstood.” I realized in that moment how many children grow up resenting the church, not just from their own experience but from witnessing the church bring pain to their parents.
If being hurt by the church is something you have experienced, it is imperative that you walk through it with your children so that they do not gain a warped view of the church. I explained that the church is Jesus’ Body, just like we have a liver, spleen, nose, eyes, hair, arms, etc. The church is made up of all sorts of different people. Just because the liver is weak doesn’t mean we give up on the whole body. We pray for the liver to be healed and whole, but we don’t give up on it. The church is family, and we do not discard family just because they are imperfect.
We owe it to the next generation to invite, bridge, and restore them to the church!
Ellie came to me one night with a nervous smile and tears in her eyes. I asked what was going on, and she said that she needed to come clean about an email she got from the school saying she BOMBED a math test. I said, “Okay, thanks for letting me know,” and her lip began to quiver. I asked what was wrong, and she said, “I need you to pray for me. I know it is okay that I didn’t do well, but I feel so slimed with shame right now (tears).” Can I just say how HAPPY it made me that at 13, she can catch the shame slime and be so articulate about it? We asked Jesus what lie she was believing, and she said, “Something is wrong with me (aka shame).” We broke agreement with it, and I just held her. She KNOWS it is okay not to get straight A’s every single time, and she KNOWS I would not be upset with her. But the enemy tried nonetheless to throw a blanket of shame. She wasn’t coming under it. She just needed help throwing it off. Not today, Satan.
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!!!”
A child of mine has been making lots of messes lately, which has caused a break in connection with the rest of us. The other night another child was crying in their room out of pure exasperation with their sibling. I knew as a mom I had to be more aggressive spiritually in going after this, but I did not know what to do. Sometimes just opening my mouth and letting others in helps shift something, so I shared it with my team. We ended up putting on worship music to be in His presence. I began to cry out for help. God showed me two specific things I was to do for this child. The one made sense, but the other was switching the kids’ rooms around. My first thought was, “Are you kidding me? Said child makes a big mess and gets rewarded with the room upgrade? Another child, who has been hurt by them, has to give that room up?” My mind did not see the wisdom in this strategy AT ALL, but when you partner with God in your parenting, and He gives you a strategy for your child who is in a hard season, you OBEY fully and completely. The kids came home from school, and we spent the night rearranging all of their rooms. I kept telling my child, “God loves you and knows you. He is so unfair in that He is not giving you what you deserve but what you NEED.” Thank You, Father, that You judge by the scales of Your eyes and not ours.
JOURNEY isn’t about a moment, a one-time fix, or a parenting program. This is about a journey of going deeper with Him. This precious mama changes her children’s lives simply by being willing to go further in her journey with Him.
“This lesson really revealed a heart splinter of my own that has been festering for two decades. As a child, I had a strong desire to go to the Air Force Academy. Looking back, I know this idea was planted by my father, a pro-military man. Being the youngest of seven kids, I also think there was some pressure to perform for the financial gain as well as sort of the ‘last-ditch effort’ from my dad. I had always been closer to my dad and felt I didn’t measure up to the perfect daughter ideal that my mother had. I would rather be in the barn with Dad than shop for the latest styles at the mall. I wholeheartedly partnered with the lie that I could achieve favor with my earthly father IF I could just get into the Academy. I worked on every piece of my life to make the Air Force Academy a reality. I pushed and pushed to be the best at all things – school, sports, standardized tests, volunteering… anything that would get me ahead and get me in. The irony is I didn’t get in, and my dad never forgave me. This year on my birthday, he mocked and ridiculed me for it again in front of my closest friends. I finally realized it wasn’t about me – my Heavenly Father was carrying me and loving me through a whole decade of self-hatred after that event. I felt abandoned by my family and was in a real state of self-defeat. I tried relationships, alcohol, and eating disorders and all those lies created more hurt and heart splinters. I prayed daily for relief from the sadness, and in hindsight, I saw God was carrying me and protecting me from myself through all those years. As I surrendered my experience, I vowed not to do that to my children. They will know God’s peace, His enduring love for them, and the truth that their worth is from Him and nothing I put upon them. I also see now that I am worthy of His love and that nothing I have done has separated me from His love.”
Parents, I invite you to join the JOURNEY. Your children will thank you for it! Journey – ONLINE CLASS – Let the Children Fly
I cannot get enough of these testimonies of moms learning how to partner with God in their parenting!
“We were sitting on the couch, snuggling together before bed, and my daughter, all of a sudden, looked towards the playroom and said, ‘Mommy, I feel scared.’ I asked her why she felt scared, and she said she was scared of the dark over there. I asked her what she saw, and she said, ‘bad guys.’ I wasn’t sure what to do, so I asked the Holy Spirit to help me, and I felt led to ask Jesus to shine his flashlight on her heart to show her where the fear was coming from. She didn’t even seem like she was listening, but I asked her, ‘What did Jesus show you?’ She said she saw us in the camper, and we were snuggling on the couch, and the bad guys came to life. IT WORKED! She just turned four, and Jesus took her back to a memory over six months ago! I was so excited Jesus spoke to her! I felt led to ask her if we were watching a movie (because fear often enters through our eye gates with movies), and she said yes, but she covered her eyes when the scary part came. I’m not sure what movie we were watching, but we are very careful that we don’t watch anything scary, so I’m guessing that the spirit of fear twisted something, and she felt afraid. We repented and said sorry to Jesus for not protecting our eye gates, and we asked Him to forgive us for watching that movie, and He said, ‘Yes, I forgive you.’ Then we took the fear out of her heart and threw it at Jesus’ feet, and asked Jesus what He wanted to give her. She said peace. We asked Jesus and the angels to come and make the bad guys leave our house, and she said she saw 20 angels! I don’t know if she actually saw 20 angels, but she definitely saw something angelic come and make the bad guys leave because the fear was gone, and I got my joyful little girl back!”
Friends, get your copy of our Heart Splinters book and become empowered how to teach your children how to defeat the works of the enemy and usher them to Jesus!