December 29, 2010

Sometimes I don't know what to say

Caution; Personal, and perhaps tedious meanderings!  Danger of incoherent flow of thought.

When life happens and the consequences are confusing and I see hurt in my daughters' eyes, sometimes I don't know what to say.  It's true; although there are those of you who will have a hard time believing such a thing.  Of course there's the comfort of prayer and the standard "leave it at the Cross", but sometimes that doesn't look or feel very real to a person who's been hurt.  I often ponder how I can help in a situation where the feelings of another can't be understood.  I know what you're thinking...Who am I that I need to know or fix things?  Well, I'm a mom, that's what we do. 
We encourage and train without breaking the will and spirit God has given our children. And we want to help them through the difficulties as we train them to face trials in the future.  If we break their will and their spirit to mold them into what we want them to become, sooner or later, they're going to turn on what we've taught them with scorn because it's our belief but it's not real to them.  They can parrot back the correct answers or tell us what we want to hear to avoid punishment or controversy but they can't figure out how to use it for themselves because our training was one of rules and punishment or rituals that show the world that we've raised perfect, godly children but didn't give them the foundation they needed to handle life on their own.

Many times the conclusion I come to is that folks aren't raised with the courage to be honest.  They don't know how to talk.  Airing dirty laundry is forbidden.  Parents often feel that they should be obeyed without question and while there's some merit it that approach, it doesn't explain to the wondering minds of our children why things must be that way.  It's easier to hurt someone than it is to be open and talk about things that may make them...or us...uncomfortable. Of course there are those who will never admit that they've done something hurtful and will try to turn it into some shortcoming of yours or make light of your feelings because they believe they are superior in one or many ways.  You know...they have their image to protect.  But the truth is that they are just sinners like you or me and although they may put on a good show, a fly on the wall would see right past all the facade to the real person underneath.  But, I digress...

How do we take the comfort of the Bible and turn it into real life; into something that we can apply to our lives on a daily basis and give understanding of to our children so they can go on to live a life for Christ because that's what they believe, not a meaningless set of rules they've followed because we demanded it of them? 

When they look around at the world, it may not seem fair that they try so hard and yet a blatant sinner is blessed while they are hurting.  That others have what they would like to have in possessions or relationships or status.  Or that someone could be so hurtful or inconsiderate or dishonest.  But God never promised us a life free from the hurtfulness of others.  Only that He would give us what we need when we need it, walk beside us through life and carry us through adversity.  But still, the struggle comes when we don't understand what's happening.  Or why?  Sound familiar?

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