Saturday, January 3, 2015

A Fresh Perspective

The loss of perspective can be a killer.
When I just can't seem to see through the thick of it,
when discouragement has set in,
when I can't see my way out of the vicious cycle I've fallen into,
just then, my Father meets me.
Just then, He sends fresh perspective through a dear friend.

The Davidson family has been such a gift to our family.
Andie is our CC director and Essentials tutor.
She has become a precious friend.
Each of my kids would say that one of her kids are their best friends.
Andie is a seasoned mom, with 8 kids, 15 and under.

A few days ago, she invited us over.
Her invitation was timely.
I was desperate for a listening ear, for some words of advice.
Andie was just that for me.
She was the friend I needed at a critical point.

Her words made a huge impact on me.
As I've struggled with Landon, his emotional highs and lows, and the test of obedience,
she gave me insight that I never would have found on my own.

"Parenting is like climbing Mount Everest, not The Rock!!"
That's a difference between 6,338 feet and 29,029 feet!
I have found myself hoping that I'm "going to turn a corner" in parenting.
That it's going to get easier, or that my kids are going to come out of this difficult stage.
For the sake of illustration, I think that at the next corner, I will reach the summit.
BUT Andie brought a reality check when she told me that the summit is FAR out of reach.
I've got another 25,000 feet to go!
Her advice was to accept that fact that the hardest is yet to come.
While that was not what I wanted to hear, I felt a sense of relief.
I can stop striving for the summit, and settle in for a VERY long walk!

She also encouraged that I listen to the sermon series, "Love the Little Ones," by Douglas Wilson.
Of the four parts, I found the first one to be extremely convicting.
Here's just a few things he said that stood out.

As our Father does with us, we are to be wrapped up in our kids, rejoice in them, delight over them, we are to burst into song when we see them them.
When we find disobedience in our homes, it is because the parents are disobeying.
The children are just imitating what they are seeing.

God gave Adam and Eve a world of yes and one no.
Keep life simple.  Keep the rules easy to memorize.
Parents far too often issue commands like a machine gun.
You don't show your authority by how much you command, but by how much you enforce.
Reduce the number of commands you issue by about 90%
and then enforce all of them.
A parent who disciplines effectively refuses to let the child be unlovely.
Discipline is corrective and is applied for the sake of the one receiving it.
Discipline is not for your sake, it is for the child's sake.

Your children need to see that you are as much under authority as they are.
And we should delight in our Authority.

So, I will step out with a fresh view of parenting as though I've just started out on a long journey to summit Mount Everest, and I will work to reduce the number of commands I issue by about 90% and then enforce all of them.



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