Ch. 10 Manipulation from the book Triggers Exchanging Parents' Angry Reactions For Gentle Biblical Responses by Amber Lia and Wendy Speake

  So July is one of those months that when it starts you think, "Man, this month is going to go by slowly.  I am going to get so much stuff done!"  Well, it didn't for me - LOL!  It has flown by.  We did have a fun time, especially Fourth of July.  We shot off fireworks at our home and had a great time.  My three older kids went to my parents' house for Camp GrandmaPoppa.  Even though I didn't get all stuff done that I wanted, I got some things off my checklist.
  Anyway, I have been going through this book month by month, chapter by chapter, and it has been a huge help to me.  I encourage you to buy it from Amazon.  The workbook along with it has been such a wonderful tool in my journey as a parent.  So, let us dive in this chapter entitled "Manipulation."  The ladies in the book write that manipulation can take all kinds of forms such as questioning our authority, withholding affection, criticisms, crying, backtalk, procrastination, and false accusations.  The whole root, they share, is selfishness.  We have to be careful to not model that same sinful root of selfishness for our own gain.  (Lia and Speake, 76)
  They share such a neat way that Jesus dealt with manipulation.  They say that He responded in a divine way.  "Consider Proverbs 26:4, 'Do not answer a fool to his folly, or you yourself will be just like him'." (NIV)  I can relate to what they say after this.  They say for us not to respond to our children as they are responding to us.  We need to be "lovingly pointing them to Christ with godly responses."  Think about when you deal with your children?  Do we respond to them or do we fight with them?  I know I have found myself not taking the time to lovingly point them to Jesus.  I just find myself yelling and arguing with them. (77)
  This next part to me is huge that these ladies share.  They say that "If we want God to bless us in our parenting, we need to be careful that we are not modeling manipulation for our own needs...We need to patiently reveal to them their responsibility, and point them towards Godly behavior."  They share with us two things Jesus did to point others to Godly behavior.  1) "He pointed out the manipulator's responsibility" and 2)  "He spoke truth from Scripture."  The ladies remind us that we can remind our children that the Lord commanded children to obey their parents so that things will go well with them.  (78)
  One example I like that they give is when a child wants something and they make a scene when they don't get it.  We don't need to get embarrassed or yell.  Simply remind them of things that they have at home that they can have fun with.  Do this in a gentle way.  You can have an opportunity to talk about things later, too, when they are more receptive.  "The key is to be calm,consistent, and focused on the goal of pointing our kids to Christ." (79)  They also point out that if we respond in a sinful way, we need to ask for forgiveness and pray for self-control and wisdom. (79 - 80) One last thing that I want to share from this excellent chapter is what these two ladies remind us.  They share that, "these conflicts are not about you.  They are an opportunity to champion the heart of your child towards righteousness; rejoice in the knowledge that God has equipped you for this awesome job.
  I just love how Amber Lia and Wendy Speake wrote these words to this chapter.  There is so much more that is in there that I didn't share.  If you haven't already done it, get their book.  It is going to be a reference tool for me to share throughout not only my own parenting but my children, too.
  As usual, I am going to end this with a song that I just love.  I think it goes along with this post so well!  It is "Refiner's Fire."  It is by Brian Doerksen.  It is one of my favorite worship songs.  I pray that as you have read this and listen to this song that you will listen for the Lord's voice.  Remember that He has equipped you for this job that you are doing.  Blessings to you as you continue on in the journey!

Love, Blessings, and {{Hugs}},


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