Dealing With Disrespectful Children

  It is November 1st - I can't believe it, but October is over.  That month is probably my favorite fall month.  I am not a huge Halloween person, so it isn't that -- not that we don't get out to get the free candy!  But, I just love the smells in the air, the thought of fall leaves, and school has found a bit of a groove.  Some days it isn't too hot, and it isn't too cold.  We get out our flannel shirts -- we're country/mountain people, so it is a requirement :0)
  Time is swiftly passing by.  The time I have with my children, giving them the foundation stuff for life, is so very precious.  I see the world and how it is becoming worse and worse, but I take heart, and so should you, that the Lord is in control.  He knew it would be like this.  Mankind is lacking in respect for each other, and frankly, they lack concern for themselves.
  That is why this chapter, to me, is so very important to read.  I am getting it now.  It isn't solely about the children when it comes to parenting.  Parenting causes us to stop and listen to the Lord and hear His voice.  It drives us to our knees and to His Word to help us parent as Jesus would.  
  This chapter talks about the child that treats you with disrespect.  In the chapter it defines respect as "Valuing someone else more that we value ourselves."  Philipians 2:3  "Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory;  but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves."  I like the next verse, too.  Philippians 2:4 "Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others."  (Triggers, Amber Lia and Wendy Speake, 32)
  The ladies in this book point out that when we parent, we must keep in mind that we are parenting immature kids.  "They need our kind instruction and humble example to grow in this area."  They go on to mention that when we are disrespected, it often "feels like a personal attack."  As hard as it is, and I know it firsthand having five little people to parent, show them unconditional love.  Matthew 7:12 "Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do you even so to them;  for this is the law and the prophets." (32)
  I appreciate the steps that they share in the book.  They call these steps "How to act like Jesus when our children are disrespectful." 
1.  Remain calm - Jesus, even in the many times that He was persecuted, remained calm.  They shared these references that tell about this -- Luke 22:63-65; Luke 23:8-25;  Luke 23:36-38;  Isaiah 53:7;  Luke23:34-35. (34 - 36)

2.  Speak the truth in love.  This is a suggestion of what to say, "Son, your tone of voice comes across as unkind and I don't think you are showing me respect.  If you would like to talk in a calm and normal voice about this issue, then you can come and find me in the other room when you are ready to speak nicely so we can work this out." (36-37)

3.  Pray! - Jesus prayed fervently.  They share that "it's not our role to change the hearts of our kids.  It's God's job to do that.  We fight the battle for their hearts in prayer!" (37)

4.  Forgive (38) - Jesus forgives us time and time and again.  If He can forgive us, we can forgive our children -- we must!

5.  Just do the right thing - "be long-suffering.  When we love them like Jesus does, it's very hard not to change with time under the power of loving-kindness."  (38)

6.  Commit yourself to your Heavenly Father - Like the ladies said earlier, we aren't responsible for the outcome of our children.  That we have to leave to the Father.  We can work on our own heart and life and live out the fruits of being in Jesus.  I love this that they said, "...trusting God to transform the lives of your loved ones in His timing."  That moves my heart!  (38)

  Amber Lia writes, "When my kids' disrespectful actions trigger my anger, I can tun reflective instead of reactive.  I can use it as an opportunity to reflect on my own deference to Christ's authority over my life when I was immature and lost, and how He bent down to lovingly restore me anyway."  The times they are disrespectful are "opportunities for me to consider whether or not I value them enough to hold my tongue and treat them with the respect that they are not showing to me." (39)

  I don't know about you, but I have really been challenged in this chapter.  Like I said earlier, I have had an "Ah-ha" moment.  I realize that the parenting is not a one-sided deal.  It isn't getting them to conform to me and what I say, but they need to take on the mind of Christ and conform to Him.  In parenting we need to be doing and modeling this for them.  I am excited that the Lord sent this book and these ladies along to share and speak to our hearts.  It is a time for me to reflect on my own heart and to take time to see where I am in my walk with the Lord.  I am not a finished project, yet!  He is still working on me and breaking me and heating me up and purifying me -- you know how the potter does!

  I am praying for you as you are walking in the way.  You may not be in the parenting season, but I think there are nuggets that can be taken away from this book.  We deal with immature people, so I think these words can be applied to a lot of situations.  I have heard this song on the radio lately, and I love it.  It is called, If We're Honest."  I know that "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sin, and cleanse us from all unrighteousness."   Take your area that you are struggling in to the foot of the cross!  Jesus is there and wants to take that burden.  Just remember, you are not alone and you are loved!  

Love, {{hugs}}, and Blessings!

I encourage you to purchase the book and study guide.  They are both awesome tools in this journey on parenting.  And I am not getting paid for this, I just think they are excellent tools!



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