Chapter 7 of Triggers: Exchanging Parents' Angry Reactions for Gentle Biblical Responses -- "Sibling Rivalry"

  We have just come off of celebrating the resurrection of Jesus this past weekend.  Praise the Lord for His sacrifice that we have a way to be with Him forever.  Not only that, but we also can have a wonderful, loving relationship with our Heavenly Father.  I am so thankful for the gift of grace --as my dad puts it, God's Riches At Christ's Expense.  I pray that you celebrated along with us, too.

  I am continuing on in my reading of this amazing book.  It has really helped me along my journey in parenting.  This next chapter was a huge help to me as I have 5 kiddos-- only 4 of them interact where the rivalry happens.  Our Sully is intellectually and physically disabled, so he gets along with everyone!  :0)  I hope that you all get as much out of this as I did.  Don't forget you can get the book and workbook on Amazon.  I encourage you to - and I am getting no monies from this.  I just think Amber Lia and Wendy Speake are spot on with their thoughts and words.

  The first thing they shared that hit me was this statement, "Have you ever felt like your kids' sibling rivalry is a sure sign that you are not a good parent?"  I say a resounding, "Yes!"  They go on to say that we aren't alone -- praise God for that!  It is "human nature."  We often get frustrated. She says that she found she "needed to reframe the way I thought about sibling rivalries to view them as opportunities."  They define Triggers as "OPPORTUNITIES if we choose to handle them that way."  (Lia and Speake, 57)

  "If we reorient our thinking about these triggers to see them as opportunities, we can be spiritually victorious."  Sibling rivalry gives us these two opportunities - 1)  My boys (which we can apply to girls, too;  these authors have boys!) learn how to identify their feelings, communicate well, and problem solve.  2) I learn to respond biblically and train my kids in righteousness.  They also said that it helps them to set a short list of family values.  They share scripture from Romans 12:17-20 as a basis -- read this set of verses.  Such good stuff in there!  They encourage us to read this to our children and ask them what it means to them.  It is a "foundational in dealing with all kinds of fighting and arguing."  (58-59)

  They share the following steps in dealing with this very situation:

1. Separate them or intervene to calm them down (59)
2.  Listen and investigate (60)
3.  Ask questions about their feelings (60)
4.  Use natural consequences and use empathy (61)
5.  Forgive and move on (62)

The key in all of this is to continue to model a biblical response, calm and gentle.  "Peacemaking moms produce peacemaking kids."  (62)  "When conflicts erupt, don't become discouraged as if their arguing is a benchmark for your mothering. (62)  I just love this verse that they end this chapter with!  It is 1 Corinthians 13:11, "When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things." (63)

  I know these sections of these books are kind of heavy stuff.  This parenting gig isn't very easy -- I told Benson that we were only 15 in our parenting since our oldest is 15.  I am thankful that this book has come along in this season.  I wish I had had it a few years ago!  I hope in some way this is applicable to you - whether you are parenting or grandparenting or know someone who is dealing with a time or season where they can help someone out.

  I always try to think of a song that fits with the post - well, this one makes me think of this song, "Life is Hard, but God is Good."  I pray that you will keep on keeping on in this job that the Lord has called you to do.  May He bless you and keep you as you parent :0)

Love, {{Hugs,}} and Blessings!


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