Updated: Aug 2, 2018
It is always a privilege to spread the gospel of Jesus Christ. It’s the good news of a Savior who died so that we might live eternally with Him. Can you receive that today? Well, we are rising up and taking our families back, by way of parenting. Oh man, this thing is real!
Before we move on, I must hit some statistics guys. Did you know that 90% of runaways come from fatherless homes, 85% of youth in prison also come from fatherless homes, and over 10 million children in America have one or more parent incarcerated? It is predicted that 70% of these children will end up in jail. Do the math, that that is 7 Million kids.
I am here to say enough is enough. We can turn this around. We can stop this spiraling out of control. Parenting, restructured, is the answer.
Our conversation right now is about parenting and how love factors into it. God is love. He is the origin of love. If we don’t know how to love, then we cannot demonstrate it before our children, and we definitely can’t teach it to them. Children learn from what you do more than what you say. We’re advised to love God with all our heart, soul and strength. What does that look like? Starting with the heart, let us take a peek.
The famed group, “Earth, Wind, and Fire” had a hit song that said, “Ain’t it funny that the way you feel shows on your face.” In other words, what goes on the inside, will be revealed on the outside. Did you get that? The heart is your inner life, your thoughts, intentions, and motives. We need a check-up on our heart condition, therefore, let a man examine himself. The only way we can effectively do this is by taking the word of God and measuring ourselves by it. His word is truth.
So here we go-As a man thinks in his heart, so is he. This scripture is loaded. It is basically saying, the way in which you continue to think, so you will be. As an example; if you continue to think negatively, then you will see others as being a problem, life as a difficult task, your children as problematic, and your spouse as a pain in the …whatever. (ROTFL ) You are then a negative thinker, and ultimately a negative person. Your thoughts, therefore, begin to shape how you perceive everything. When you are presented with an idea, your inclination will be toward the negative.
No matter how positive something is, a negative person will only see it negatively and will find fault with it somewhere. They can reach into a bag of pearly marbles and pull out the only damaged one, then proclaim, “see I told you those marbles were flawed.” (SMH) What’s flawed, is their heart and the way they see things.
Years ago, when I was a single parent, it was hard. I was an entrepreneur, homeschooling two kids, and trying to have a life as well. Parenting took up the bulk of my time. I didn’t realize it, but I had become resentful towards my kids inwardly. I had a “me versus them” mentality. In my mind, everything I did was for them and nothing was for me. I felt used and abused and I didn’t like it. What’s more, I didn’t even realize that I had this attitude.
Let me pause and define attitude. An attitude is an inward feeling that is expressed outwardly-like the words of that “Earth, Wind and Fire” song: Ain’t it funny that the way you feel shows on your face. All this attitude was the result of inward dialogue or thoughts upon thoughts, which further led to meditation-believe it or not. I didn’t realize that I had become resentful towards the children I professed to love until one day, when the Lord woke me up and said, “You need to see yourselves as a family.”
Immediately, I knew exactly what He was saying. In my mind, I had created a division. In my mind, we were the “me” versus “them” family, and as much as I believed I loved them, I was parenting out of obligation and responsibility and not love. From that moment, I changed my mind and began to see my children as part of me. I fell in love with them for real. “WE” became “ONE” family!
You see, it can be difficult discerning what’s in your own heart because a man’s ways are right in his own eyes. This is why we must have the word of God. For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. (Hebrews 4:12)
Out of our heart flows the issues of life. This “stinking thinking” was in me, but I couldn’t see it until God revealed it to me. Once I shifted my thinking, the love flowed. This is what it means to be wholeheartedly in love with God. You will begin to think the way He thinks, see the way He sees, and respond to things the way He would respond. Loving God with all your heart is to constantly yield your thinking to His way of thinking. This is what it looks like, laying down your inner life and taking up His.
That’s what’s up. As parents, don’t we want our children to live a divinely empowered life?
We are setting that in motion when we demonstrate a heart that is full of reverent, obedient love for God. Today, God is calling parents from every corner of the world to get back in position. Take up the reigns and stand watch over their families. The battle is not yours, it’s the Lord’s. Let the same mind be in you that was also in Christ Jesus.
Listen believers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable and worthy of respect, whatever is right and confirmed by God’s word, whatever is pure and wholesome, whatever is lovely and brings peace, whatever is admirable and of good repute; if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think continually on these things [center your mind on them, and IMPLANT THEM IN YOUR HEART]. The things which you have learned, received, heard and seen, practice these things [in daily life], and the God [who is the source] of peace and well-being will be with you AND YOUR CHILDREN!