Wednesday, November 30, 2016

DIVIDING IS CONQUERING

Hello sweet women.  How I love you.  How I appreciate all your emails and encouraging words. (awordtothewives@gmail.com) I feel honored when you ask me to pray with you about something.  Thank you for that.  And thank you for telling your friends about Mrs. Older and her blog.  And thank you for hanging in there this past year or so while Mrs. Older has been writing and traveling and speaking a zillion times more than she ever did. I am blessed to know you. 



Today I'd like to just touch on a few things that God has allowed us to know about Him. Yes... allowed.  We all want to know God. But the miracle is that God wants us to know Him.. and wants us to know that He knows us.  Go figure. Why would God even care about having a relationship with us?  He just does. He just does.

When you were first dating your husband, or when you were newly married, you took note of what your husband liked because you wanted to please him. (Hopefully he was doing the same thing - wanting to please you).  It's human nature that when we love someone, or have a friendship with someone, we want to know that person. The other side of wanting to please your husband also included knowing what he DIDN'T LIKE. You may have learned little things like: he loves steak - he hates it cooked well-done; he loves to watch football games - he hates when anyone tries to have a conversation about something while the game is on. (Hint, hint honey). You get what I mean.

When it comes to God we know that He is love.  We know that when we put our faith in His Son, Jesus, we are clean and forgiven and without fear of anyone condemning us. We know that HE LOVES US.  HE ADORES US.  HE IS PLEASED WITH US utterly and completely.  Having said that, having put that in there so that you don't think Mrs. Older has become Mrs. Legalistic Church Lady...I thought it would be interesting to know what God doesn't like.  To please Him more? He is pleased with you because of Jesus.  To know Him more? Yup.

Proverbs 6:16-19 says this: 

"Here are six things the Lord hates - no, seven things he detests:
(1) haughty eyes; (2) a lying tongue; (3) hands that kill the innocent; (4) a heart that plots evil; (5) feet that race to do wrong, (6)a false witness who pours out lies; (7)a person who sows discord in a family. 

You know... I could write a million words about each one. Maybe I will in the future. Talk about those haughty eyes that look down on others and the woman who sees herself as better than others.. oh yes.. we all know her....but... I will control myself.... and.. just talk about the last one of seven:

Have you ever noticed, or thought about the truth that God despises when a person "sows discord in a family."  Yes dear woman of God, as you talk against your sister-in-law, or your sister... your mother-in-law, or brother... you are sowing discord. God hates that.  Did you realize that? It's true.  God cares about family unity.

I notice that the Bible uses the word "sows".  It gives a picture of someone who spreads tiny seeds of discord.  Small little seeds.. a sentence here.. a big deal over nothing there...

These seeds of discord.. they are sown in a way... they divide in a way that isn't noticed at first.  And then comes the horrible harvest. A family has been divided.

God despises this.  

GOD DESPISES THIS. Don't do it.
AM I SAYING HE DOESN'T LOVE YOU ANYMORE?
AM I SAYING YOU ARE NOT HIS CHILD ANYMORE?
AM I BEING "LEGALISTIC LOUISE" WHO IS MAKING YOU FEEL CONDEMNED?

I PRAY NOT.

I AM simply giving you a perspective as the holidays approach.. and for all year...

GOD HATES (yes.. the word is hate) and despises (yes.. it's a type of abomination to Him) 

when you DIVIDE your family.  HE HATES when some kind of disagreement causes ONE FAMILY MEMBER to separate from another.

GOD hates and despises division. 
In HIS family. And in YOUR FAMILY.

Remember this as you prepare for the holidays.
Remember this as someone makes a big deal out of something small.

Talking behind someone's back - a family member - is no big deal to many of us.. but...

It's something God HATES.

SO...
Don't.  Do.  It.


"Make every effort to live in peace with everyone and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord."

Hebrews 12:14

Just sayin'

Love you,
Mrs. Older

P.S. You are also invited to leave your comments.

  



19       

Sunday, November 27, 2016

WHAT IS JESUS' REASON FOR THE SEASON?

Christmas is almost here.  Who knew that 2016 was going to FLY BY?  Wasn't Christmas 2015 just, like, uh... three weeks ago?

Is it possible to have a real "peace on earth" kind of Christmas?  Are you gearing up to defend yourself from those shots some family members cannot stop taking???   Here are some things to ponder and remember.

Scrooge Alert:
For those of us who claim to live our lives by Scripture, we must remind ourselves that the Bible NEVER instructs us to remember and celebrate the BIRTH of Jesus.  It tells us to remember His Death and Resurrection. Celebrating Jesus birthday is a man-made tradition.  Is it wrong? Nope... my personal opinion is that any day of the year that causes His Name to be proclaimed.. and songs about Him to be sung.. is a good thing.  Just mentioning, though, that we are not defending The Faith when we punch people who don't say "Merry Christmas" and boycott stores that have "Happy Holidays" signs instead of "Merry Christmas" signs.  It's just a man-made tradition.   Just sayin'.  
Because the day has gotten far from it's original intent and purpose..some of my Christian brothers and sisters are fond of repeating the phrase, "Jesus is the reason for the season."  It's a good phrase.

I'd like to rework that phrase a bit.
Maybe a better way to survive Christmas is to ask - and find the answer to - the question:
"What is Jesus' reason for the season?" 

The answer:   to give up His rights as the Son of God and became the Son of Man. To save the world.

How does that apply to us?  The followers of The Birthday Man?

This is not popular dear sister Mrs. Younger.. but.. Jesus clearly states that IF we want to be His Follower (our choice).. then we must "deny ourselves" as we take up our Cross.  It' means to give up our God-given rights and lay them down in order for the life of Jesus to be seen in our lives... so...

Do you have the right to insist that your mother-in-law stop insisting your family must eat dinner at her house every year instead of yours?  ABSOLUTELY.  Did Jesus have the right to stay in heaven instead of being born in a manger in Bethlehem? ABSOLUTELY. He gave up His rights so that you could have life. It's one meal. Will it bring peace? Is she a brat for insisting? Yup. Are you playing in to her demanding heart.  Yes. Yes. Yes?  Lay down your rights.  It brings peace on earth.

Does your son's girlfriend hate you?  Does he want to bring her to your home for Christmas dinner? Do you have the right to exclude someone who hates you from your home on Christmas Day?  YES. ABSOLUTELY. YES.  Did Jesus give up His right to be in heaven on thirty-three December 25ths?  UH.. yes He did.
Give her a warm welcome.  Jesus, whose birth we celebrate said, "If you only love those who love you how are you different from heathen unbelievers?"

Give up your supposed right to be angry at and jealous of women who can give their children things you can never give to yours.  Does it break your heart when your children want things that you cannot give them - and - watch them see other children whose parents can afford what you cannot?  Yes. It hurts a mom's heart for this to happen.  But you don't have the right to be angry about what someone else does have.  Lay it down. Give it up.

The core of Christmas Day is that Someone gave up every right He had to become lower than the angels who sang to the Shepherds in the field.

Jesus reason for the season is often not the same as ours. 

Jesus gave up His right to heaven so that He could share it with you.

Give up your rights this Christmas Day.
You will find peace on earth.

XO,
Mrs. Older

P.S. I don't know how you are hearing about this blog.. but.. I have people who have signed up to receive my blog...  from Canada, England, Germany, Italy, Greece, Australia, Norway, Singapore.. to name just a few.. and almost every state in the United States. Thank you.  You can sign up to receive this in the upper right hand corner of this page.





Wednesday, October 12, 2016

HOW I PRAYED FOR YOU




 AN EXCERPT FROM THE BOOK, 
"HOW TO MAKE A MEATBALL 
Recipes For Living My Mother Taught Me"

“How I Prayed For You”
“May she who gave you birth be joyful!”
- Proverbs 23:25
            My mother frequently reminded me that she prayed for me. That she wanted me very, very much.  She says that she became a little concerned that she wouldn’t be able to have me as she was raising my brother. She wanted a daughter. So she prayed and prayed and prayed specifically for a little girl.  After just a few months she found out she was expecting again. All my life she reminded me how much I was wanted. She said to me on several million occasions,  “How I prayed for you. I prayed for you.” I never really understood how much security and self worth that instilled in the deepest part of my being until I grew up. She tells me that when my father saw me, he called everyone in the family to explode with the news, “She looks just like me!” (I do look just like my father.) She says my eight-year-old brother was thrilled too. (I’m not sure about the accuracy of that statement). All my life, the story I heard about my parent’s reaction to my birth is that I was wanted, and prayed for, and cherished and rejoiced over.  All my life my mother was joyful that I existed. Just because I breathed air brought her great joy.
            Which brings me to something I heard her teaching with great gusto to the moms who were in her spiritual care. She would ask some very pointed questions like:  “Why did you tell your child he was a mistake? Do you realize that God creates life? Does God make mistakes?” What better way to make that kid feel unwanted than telling that kid he was unwanted? It was a big parenting deal to my mother. It may not seem like a great big deal to many people, but try telling that to the person who went through life knowing he was “an accident.” She would often repeat this sentence, “If you have already made the mistake of telling your child he was a mistake, then you cannot take those words back.  But you can add words that will help toward healing. Tell him that it was a mistake to tell him he was a mistake because he is the best thing that ever happened to you. Every child is a gift from God. It is God who creates life. Who has to audacity to tell God His gift is a mistake? His gift is an accident?” Great questions Mom, great questions.

 Molly’s Meatball Lesson #59
The biggest mistake a parent can make is telling your child he was a mistake.
Don’t do it.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

SIMPLE TRUTH: "ZAP HIM" PRAYERS AND THE WIVES WHO PRAY THEM


In my last blog I wrote about what to do when your husband is your enemy. And the answer was to continue to pray for him.  Continue to love him.  And continue to give the situation to the Lord to deal with.  Simple truth is that you will NEED the HOLY SPIRIT to give you the power to love and pray for someone who mistreats you. Jesus never asks us to do something without sending us the power to do it.

There may be some Mrs. Younger's who are expecting that the result of giving the situation of your mean and nasty husband to Jesus will cause Jesus to send down lightening from heaven to zap your mean and horrible husband.  Uhhhh.... No.  

It is vital for every wounded wife to understand that Jesus is not in the business of destroying people who don't like us or treat us poorly or reject us....or Him.

I think that's why so many of us give up on praying. WE pray "Lord... Lord... ZAP HIM, LORD!" prayers. We want to see some evidence that God is just as annoyed at our husband as we are. We want to SEE SOMETHING outwardly.  We want to see our husband PAY for the way he is treating us. (God will discipline your husband.. but not because YOU told Him to.)  We expect a consequence to happen to a person who is being mean to us.. especially after we zip our lips and pray to God about it. 

Don't feel bad if that's what you were expecting.  Don't feel bad if that's what's in your heart.  Well... don't feel GOOD.. but just know that you're in good company.  You're just like Jesus' disciples James and John.  You can read the story for yourself in Luke 9:51-56.

These two disciples assumed Jesus would destroy people who rejected Him like the Samaritan town they were in had just done.  

They asked,  "Lord, do you want us to command fire to come down from heaven and consume them?
(Luke 9:54).  

They didn't really GET or UNDERSTAND who Jesus was.  Why He came.  What His purpose was.  And neither do we when our request of Jesus is to get Him to "get" someone else... or judge someone else...
The disciples felt JUSTIFIED in their hellfire and brimstone attitude.. and sometimes.. in our natural human flesh.. so do we.  A mean husband? Zap him, Lord.

But instead of agreeing with how unholy and unjust those townspeople were, Jesus rebukes those holier-than-thou disciples, saying..

"You do not know what kind of spirit you are of;  for the Son of Man did not come to destroy men's lives but to save them." 

He was MORE CONCERNED about the VENGEFUL SPIRIT inside James and John than the REJECTION of the townspeople.  Maybe James and John were expecting some mutual commiserating from Jesus about the injustice of rejecting the Only Son of Only God?  I think so.  And what better reason to call down fire from heaven than on people who are mean to and reject Jesus?  Who is perfect but Jesus? (No one who is reading this and not the one writing it, for sure)
And yet..as perfect and sinless as Jesus is... He didn't seem upset about the way the people treated Him. I wonder what James and John said to one another about Jesus remarks to them? I wonder if they were as surprised as I am to be reminded time and time again that Jesus focus is always on the heart.. on my heart.. and the attitude in it.

What better reason to call down fire from heaven than for a husband who is not being the man of God he needs to be.. or is not loving his wife the way Jesus loved the church.. or his not providing.. or is not kind... or is mean and angry... who says demeaning things to his wife and children....????  and... the list goes on and on.  We go to Jesus about the unfair situation.. we expect Him to call down fire from heaven and show that He is on OUR SIDE...


BUT.... JESUS DID NOT REBUKE THE TOWN... HE REBUKED THE DISCIPLES..
  
Jesus was LESS CONCERNED with the fact that the Samaritan town had rejected Him and MORE CONCERNED with the vengeful spirit inside James and John. 

Uhhhhhh Ohhhhhhh

When you go to the Lord to speak to Him about someone in your life who is being unfair to you, your spirit needs to be in tune with the Spirit of God.  When our spirit is bent on revenge, justice, rebukes and correction... we are not praying according to the will of God.

The Son of Man did not come to destroy your husband's life but to save it.  
Simple truth: Jesus loves your husband enough to die for the sin he is living.
Yes... He died to give your husband LIFE.

He wants to HEAL your husband's heart.  He wants to HEAL you. He wants to heal your home.. and heal your children's wounded hearts. (Next blog we will discuss what your arguing is doing to your children.)

Your husband needs healing.  Something inside him is not healthy if he doesn't understand the way to love his wife and family.  It's called sin.  We are all infected.

Pray for the Lord to HEAL your husband... not ZAP him.
Pray for the Lord to REVEAL Himself to your husband
And while you're at it.. ask the Lord to HEAL you.. REVEAL Himself to you.

God is not unfair.  And God sees your broken heart.  
And He will heal everything you give to Him to HEAL.
Give the hurt to God.
Let God deal with your husband while you simply deal with God.
He loves you.

"He heals  the brokenhearted and  bandages their wounds."
Psalm 147:3 

"The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to preach the Gospel to the poor. He has sent me to heal the brokenhearted
to preach deliverance to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to preach the acceptable year of the Lord." - JESUS
Luke 4:18-19

XO,
Mrs. Older

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

SIMPLE TRUTH: WHEN YOUR HUSBAND IS YOUR ENEMY

Sometimes, on some days, in some marriages, the two people involved are living in a war zone. The disagreements between the husband and wife have become so all consuming, so overwhelming, so deep inside their hearts that the spouse becomes like an enemy.

My mother passed away in June of 2015.  I was a blessed daughter and woman to have grown up with such a wise and Godly mother.  She was a pastor's wife, and had so many younger women in her loving care.  I remember hearing her quote this Scripture to women whose husbands seemed like the enemy to them..... repeating the words of Jesus: 

“You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’  But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven." 

(Matthew 5:43-44)

Her words to these wives played over in my head on the days I felt so angry at my husband for one thing or another.  (Yes.. in 46 years of marriage...Mr. and Mrs. Older have had an argument or two.. or three... or fifty...or a thousand... really).

I don't know how your marriage is on a day to day basis, but I can tell you that some marriages are like two enemies.. two fighting rivals... who happen to live in the same house, and have the same children.  

Mom's voice rings in my head and in my heart as I can clearly hear her as she spoke to brokenhearted and angry wives, "Jesus wants us to love our enemies and pray for people who persecute us. So then, are you praying for your husband? Even though you think he is the enemy in your life? Even if he HAS become like an enemy to you... do you see that Jesus expects you to love your enemies?  Even when the enemy is your own husband? And while you feel you are being persecuted and mistreated by him... are you continuing to pray FOR him? Are you continuing to ask God to intervene?  If you don't pray for your husband, who will?"  

Let me give you some simple truth:  Only God understands WHY your husband is acting the way he is.  Only God understands what it will take to bring peace between the two of you. Only God can change hearts. Yours. And your husband's. 

And God will gladly HEAL every heart.  He longs to restore. Resurrect. Revive. 
Do you believe this?
It is the most simple, yet profound, Truth.
God can heal your heart. IF YOU LET HIM.

And so today, I challenge you to give it a try.  
The simple truth is that only prayer can change things in your marriage 
Only God can change things in your home.

Simple truth?  Yes.
THE Truth? Yes.

I understand it may be new to you.  So here's the way to begin:
Three times today.. just three time...  when you are getting ready to talk to someone about what a mean husband you have... turn those words toward God.
Three times today.. when your husband is being COMPLETELY unfair.. and mean-spirited... TALK TO GOD ABOU THE SITUATION... and not your husband.
Just three times a day.
Just a few minutes today.
When you feel that anger rising.. stop... and tell God.
"God, please help this anger. 
Please help my husband.
Please help our marriage.
Please take control of me, my anger, my husband and our family."

If you call yourself a follower of Jesus... a Christian.. remember that Jesus is not our "SUGGESTER."  

He doesn't SUGGEST that we love our enemies and pray for those who persecute us. 

HE COMMANDS IT.

Mrs. Older has discovered that this is the Simple Truth about those seasons when your husband is your enemy.

I love you all.
P.S. Thank you that even in my sabbatical from writing this blog you have continued to have your friends and family sign up to receive this via email. I do not take that lightly.  I am honored that you do so.

XO,
MRS. OLDER

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

SIMPLE TRUTH: LOSING THE WILL

"God's will?", she said, "What do you mean?" 

I answered, "I mean, The Will of God."

"You mean like a will.  Like people leave a will when they die?" 

"Well, sorta.  But no.  I mean God has written down what His will is but it isn't called a "Will" in the legal sense, though it is His Law. Actually.. the word "testament" means something like a will.  But.. It's all in the Bible. God's will is what we know is God's desire in any situation we face.  We ask Him, 'Lord, what is Your will for me in this situation?'  God's will is God's desire for this situation. His will. His plan. So then, you might consider asking yourself, "What is God's will for me concerning this difficult season in my marriage?" 

She said, "I have no earthly idea what you are talking about." 

At my age, it takes a lot to shock me, but her words SHOCKED me.

I wouldn't have been quite so surprised and dumbfounded if I was having this conversation with a woman who had just landed on earth from the Planet Xqmantiansosxept and had never heard a sermon and never owned a Bible.

You would never have guessed this woman is a forty-three year old suburban wife and mother who teaches Children's Church to fourth graders every Sunday morning in a HUGE evangelical church.  She had contacted me after hearing me speak at a Women's Event at her church.  She and her husband were having HORRIFIC problems, according to her. Although I told her that she should speak to her pastor rather than to me, I politely listened to her go on and on about her various marital problems.

As I listened I understood that her primary problem is that she wanted her husband to do what she wanted him to do when ever she wanted him to do it.

I mean seriously, who doesn't?  Who doesn't want the people around us to do whatever we want whenever we want them to do it?  We know that isn't reality. And we accept that we will not always get our way in life.

For her...there were no significant issues.  He was a nice guy married to a nice woman.She was slightly bratty.  He was slightly unaware of how to please his wife.  Nothing a little prayer couldn't fix. A little time in the Presence of the Lord.


As she spoke, Bible verses kept popping in to my mind.  Scriptures like, 

"In every thing give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you."  
(1 Thessalonians 5:18) 

and

“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven." 
(Matthew 7:21)

and

Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done. 
(Luke 22:42)

She explained to me that she had NEVER heard one person - (according to her) - ever teach her that God has a will, and that He expects His children to find it.. and then DO IT.   Not her pastor.  Not her pastor's wife.  None of the people she attended church with.  

"Do you know that Jesus explained that He had come to earth to do the will of His Father?", I asked her.  "Do you understand that when faced with death on the Cross, it was His desire to do God's will that caused Him to bear our sin?"

Anyway... she did not know... and/or care about doing God's will.
She did not WANT to give thanks in everything. 
She did not WANT to forgive.
She didn't want God's will.
She wanted her own.

We finished our conversation.  I explained to her that her pastor was the one they needed to speak to.  She said she would contact him.

That day I realized that some people live their whole Christian life never even considering that they should bend their will to God's will.  And that some people think God has a lot of nerve wanting His will to be done in their lives.  And that many Christian church goers have no idea that "No, Lord" is an oxymoron. 

Can you believe that?

So.. for today... let's just acknowledge that you CAN find something to thank God for. You can.  Life may be very challenging for you right now.. but 1 Thessalonians 5:18 gives you SIMPLE TRUTH from God's PERSPECTIVE.  In everything. In. Every. Thing.
GIVE THANKS.
Why?
It's God's will concerning you.
It's God's will for you to give thanks.
And what is happening is God's will concerning YOU.
Can you see?
Thank Him.
Can you breathe?
Thank Him.
Did you eat today?
Thank Him.
Do you have a bed to sleep in?
Thank Him.
Can you walk?
Thank Him.
 Thanks for reading.  As you can see, Mrs. Older is back writing these blogs again.
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Your fellow Mrs. Youngers come from ALL OVER THE WORLD.  Don't know how the word got out, but Mrs. Older is thankful to you for signing up.

XO...
 

Monday, July 11, 2016

SIMPLE TRUTH

"He never sees my side of the argument" she said to me with a look of horror on her face. 
I waited for her to finish her point. 
Evidently, that WAS her point:  her husband never sees HER side of the argument.  
I gently replied, "Well, if he DID see your side of the argument, then you wouldn't be having an argument, would you?" 

She sat there musing over these words and then muttered, "Well, that's true."

I continued, "So the whole foundation of an argument is that you can't see his side and he can't see yours. If he saw your side, and agreed with you then you wouldn't be arguing." 

She looked at me like I had just morphed in to Obi Won Kanobi and Yoda all wrapped in to one person. "Yes.. that's true" she answered

I explained to her something I'd learned decades ago.  I explained that I would often get off track when my husband and I disagreed because my main GOAL was to get him to agree with me.  I wanted him to agree that I was right, to acknowledge that my position on whatever was causing the argument was the correct one.  

The only problem is that he was just as sure that I was wrong and he was right. 

And once again.. it is the simple truth of getting through life with a spouse that is so often overlooked.  

Where did we get the idea that a good marriage is one where you NEVER disagree?  

Accept that the reason you are having an argument is because he feels just as strongly that he is RIGHT as you do that he is WRONG.

The goal is not to get him to agree with you.. but to reach "agreement." 
This is different.
It doesn't matter WHAT you are arguing about - it is a foolish husband and wife whose goal is to be right.. to convince the other of his/her "rightness."

After a while.. after arguing about something all night, or all week, or all month, or all year........it begins to tear at the foundation of your love.  You may not see it at first, but stubborn refusal to reach agreement is taking its toll. 

IT IS POSSIBLE TO LOVE SOMEONE YOU DO NOT AGREE WTIH. 
IT IS POSSIBLE.
IT IS PREFERABLE.

An argument means you don't agree. Why is this shocking?  
Agreement means you don't care if you agree, as long as you get along.
Get along.


Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.
   Colossians 3:13

Friday, May 20, 2016

THE CASE FOR PARENTAL APOLOGIES

So.. in my last blog we talked about talking.  I would like to expand on that a bit and talk about parental apologies. I'm not talking about telling your kids that you're sorry for being less than you think you should be or to apologize for being human.  I'm not talking about apologizing because you cannot afford to buy them $250 sneakers or a new car when they graduate.  NEVER apologize if you are doing your best. 

No one is a perfect parent. 
But every parent makes mistakes. I am talking about parents who think it is the unpardonable sin to admit to making a parental mistake. WHY? WHY? WHY?

When a child becomes a teenager and older.. they often begin to vent about the mistakes their parents have made.  Sometimes they are just being brats... but.. sometimes... in all HONESTY...the kid has a point.  

I AM A COWARD and when parents lament to me about THE NERVE THEIR KID HAS...to say such things.. I just NOD MY HEAD... and say nothing.  Because... although I am no where near a professional counselor.. I have had people speak to me in my role as a public ministry person... (Whatever that is..)... and I have discovered that one of the most DIFFICULT situations to talk to another parent about is their child.. or they way they are raising that child. It's like exploding a nuclear bomb. So I have learned my lesson.. and usually just NOD... 

WHAT I REALLY WANT TO SAY is "I can totally see your kid's point. And they are actually being very accurate in their assessment. You did what they said you did... and the only way to keep your child's love and respect is to humbly admit it.. AND ASK FOR FORGIVENESS."   In reality... REAL HEALING WILL COME.. between that parent and that child.  

What I have observed MOST OFTEN...is parents who will not admit they've made a mistake, and therefore they are never open enough to admit it to their kid. This lack of acknowledging that maybe.. yes.. you were an angry person most of the time...... or maybe... yes.. you DO favor their sibling.. or maybe.. yes... you are very selfish and self-centered.. or maybe.. yes.. you do have a problem with being materialistic... or maybe.. yes.. you were too career focused.... or maybe you ARE too concerned with looking good to people....or maybe you did confuse them about being a Christian because you said you were one, but nothing about your actual life supported that... and on and on and on.  

So the parent just smugly refuses to see that they were not perfect.  Who is?  And they refuse to see that in their human lack of perfection they had an attitude.. or they did something.. that HURT THEIR CHILD.  

Because that's the bottom line.  A person has been hurt. God wants to bring healing to that person. And to you.  God is all about healing and restoring and in His Kingdom that always starts with someone acknowledging being in need of being forgiven.  As in.. you and me. 

Maybe the kid isn't being a whiny, brat... MAYBE??? Would you absolutely die a death if you devoted 93 seconds to run that question through your brain? Your heart? Your spirit?  Could you stop before slamming them down - creating an deeper and wider chasm between the two of you - and THINK if MAYBE there is SOME TRUTH THERE?

 I remember hearing a sermon by Dr. Charles Stanley many decades ago. It changed my thinking.  The title was "How To Handle Criticism" and his first point was "Acknowledge to yourself that there IS some truth in EVERY criticism."  He went on to say that the person accusing you of something most certainly has an agenda, and most certainly may be MAGNIFYING the flaw.. but... he suggested that before you start defending yourself.. just step back and ask yourself, "Is there any small grain of truth in this criticism?" 

I am suggesting... suggesting.. that maybe if you would LISTEN to your child's complaint against you... and bring it to the Lord.. and ask The Holy Spirit whether or not this is something that you have unknowingly done.. and IF so.. 

THEN SAY SO to your child.   Even if the kid is seven years old and tells you that you embarrassed him in front of Aunt Marcia and Uncle Bill by making him play his clarinet.  STOP.  THINK BEFORE you defend yourself.  Did you?  Is there ANY truth from the child's perspective?
So then say, "You know what?  I can see your point.  I understand that I embarrassed you.  I am just so proud of the way you play and I wanted them to hear your.  BUT WILL YOU FORGIVE ME FOR DOING THAT? I AM SORRY to embarrass you."

YOU WILL NOT DIE A THOUSAND DEATHS. You will have gained your child's respect.

I am a big fan of DECLARATIONS.  I have seen it change the course of a family when a father says something like, "I have an announcement! I want to admit that I was not the spiritual leader in our home when you were growing up.  I would like to ask you to forgive me for that.  FROM THIS DAY ON.. I WILL DEVOTE MYSELF TO BEING WHAT I SHOULD BE."  
AND guess what?  The father GAINS respect from his children.  The pride that keeps him from admitting his mistake doesn't gain a thing.. except a child who doesn't understand what it means to have a transparent relationship. 

My parents were never afraid to admit to a mistake and then ASK FOR FORGIVENESS..   The longer I am living without them... the more I understand what INCREDIBLY humble and loving parents they were. WERE THEY FIRM? Yes, like Gestapo prison guards. 
WERE THEY LOVING? Yes, like people full of God's love.
DID I RESPECT THEM?  Beyond measure.

IF you did it, admit it... and move on to healing.

NEXT BLOG.. "Parents Who Refuse To Forgive Their Children"

XO,
Mrs. Older
P.S. I am writing again on a regular basis.  So encourage your mommy and daddy friends to sign up to receive this. Thanks.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

LET'S TALK ABOUT TALKING

Research scientists have confirmed the fact that women talk more than men do. As if we needed research scientists to confirm that fact.   When it comes to raising children, even in a society where both parents work full time jobs, some other research scientists have confirmed that in most families it is still the MOM does most of the talking to the kids.

So for today, I would like to remind all my sweet Mrs. Youngers that YOUR WORDS are FORMING YOUR CHILD.   What he thinks of himself, what he thinks of others, what he thinks about the world - is a direct result of your daily speech.  To him. About him. About others.  The world is bombarding your child with unGodly advice, unGodly opinion about what's important, what's "cool."  If you remain silent, or if you don't understand the power of a mother's words... you are being foolish with the future of the child you love.  Your words decide if your child has hope, has joy, has love.

But most importantly, YOUR WORDS will hold the most influence over what your child thinks about GOD.   God never created a system where we drop our kids off at children's church, or the youth group meeting and hope that the youth pastor will influence our child to love God.  When did this happen that Christian parents rely on someone ELSE to influence their own child?

Your child needs to see YOU loving God - every day - in every aspect of your existence.  

I cannot remind you enough that God has placed the FULL RESPONSIBILITY for children knowing Him and knowing about Him on the shoulders of the child's parents.  Deuteronomy 6:5-9 gives us a look in to God's plan for parents when it reads HIS WORDS to HIS PEOPLE:

"Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.  These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the door frames of your houses and on your gates."

We learn from these verses that God instructed parents:

  • The HEART of the parents should be full of God's love and God's laws.
  • THIS fervency for God was to be IMPRESSED on their children.
  • It's all an all-day every day walk of talking.
TALKING.  TALKING. TALKING.

"Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up."

I was blessed, blessed, blessed with Godly parents.  The Lord was what they talked about.  Every situation became a way to show me God and His love.  We sang songs about the Lord.  We talked about the Bible.  We prayed together before bed. We prayed first each morning. 

MOM... what are you talking to your kids about?
Jesus?

Their souls?

Their God?

In the end, you cannot ignore God's words to parents by not caring about your words to your kids.  YOU are SUPPOSED to.. COMMANDED to.. REQUIRED to TEACH YOUR CHILDREN ABOUT GOD.

But first you have to know Him for yourself.  Take time to seek God.
Take time to speak about His goodness and love to your children

I love you.
Mrs Older.

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Monday, May 16, 2016

HIGHLY RECOMMENDED

Hello my sweet Mrs. Youngers:

Mrs. Older is very sorry to have abandoned you.  It is not by choice.  It's a good thing.. and...I truly DO pray for you all the time, but this season of my life has become very busy... and very busy.. SUDDENLY.  I wrote a book about my mother.. and a movie came out last year in which one of the main characters was based loosely on her and her life... and I am being asked to speak all over the place.... about her life, the movie, and my book about her... I am also blessed to have more and more requests to WRITE more.. and I am so missing my interactions with all of you.  In a few weeks my life will slow down again... and so..   AND EVEN THOUGH I MAY NOT BE WRITING YOU... I AM SO THANKFUL FOR THOSE OF YOU WHO CONTINUE TO KEEP IN TOUCH WITH ME VIA EMAIL.


IN THE MEANTIME.. I would like to recommend a book that a friend of mine wrote.  She is the pastor's wife of a very large and thriving church in Tennessee.  She is a well known author and Bible teacher. 

Her latest book is SIMPLY PHENOMENAL.... I urge every one of you to consider purchasing it.


HERE is a link to the book at Amazon.

http://www.amazon.com/Spiritual-Warfare-Your-Family-Children/dp/0764217550/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1463420770&sr=8-1&keywords=leighann+mccoy


Tuesday, March 22, 2016

WHAT ARE YOU AFRAID OF?

Last night, i just vegged out on the sofa and watched TV.  It's been a busy couple of months..I just had a book come out... and.. well... I have been traveling more and speaking more...and so.... last night was just one of those nights that I sat down on the sofa with a cup of mint tea (I LOVE MINT TEA), remote control in hand... and I flipped through various channels.  Mrs. Older = Couch Potato.

And I noticed something.  Much of the programming and advertising is very FEAR BASED.  The advertisers - many of them - seem to have learned that if they can connect what we are afraid of and convince us that their product will protect us from whatever we are afraid of..... they can close the sale.  And much of the news reporting creates FEAR.  FEAR. FEAR. FEAR.

We are all afraid.  Why? Life is scary, THAT'S WHY.

I don't need to remind you - or me - of all the things that cause us to fear.  
But I do want to take the time to remind you of a SIMPLE TRUTH:   JESUS CARES ABOUT YOU.  AND ME. 1 Peter 5:7

 "Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you."

So then.. here's the deal.  Either you believe that or you don't.  I can type ten zillion words of cheerleading you to faith in that truth.. but.. the bottom line is this: 

Either you believe that God CARES ABOUT YOU and WHAT YOU ARE GOING THROUGH... or you don't.   And if you don't... life is overwhelming at the moment.  It's just the truth. We cannot get through what life can throw at us WITHOUT JESUS.

HE CARES ABOUT YOU.  That is the TRUTH.  HE CARES ABOUT YOU. HE DOES.  
So then when you think thoughts that convince you that God DOES NOT CARE ABOUT YOU.. and that you are in this thing all alone... you are thinking a lie.  We know that Satan is the FATHER of lies.  

IF he can convince you - and most of us - that God does NOT care.. then we do NOT give ALL our worries and ALL our cares to Him.  Why give something so overwhelming to Someone who doesn't care?  So... we carry them and they weigh us down. And eventually carrying the weight of what we could have given to God DEFEATS US.  That's the trick. Get you to doubt the GOODNESS of God, the MERCY of God, the LOVE of God.. and you fall down and cannot get up. 

Worried about your children? Cast that worry on God. "God, I cannot change one thing in the life of my children, but You can. Will you take this burden from me and help me? I KNOW YOU CARE ABOUT THIS."

Worried about your success as a mom?  As a wife?  Give it to God. "God, I feel like such a failure.  These negative thoughts are weighing me down.  I KNOW you care about me. Please take this and help me." 

ON AND ON.  Whatever is burdening you today... can be brought to God, your Father in Heaven.. Why?  Because HE CARES ABOUT YOU. Sure, He loves the WHOLE WORLD, but He LOVES you... sitting there in Australia.... or Montana... or California.. or Pennsylvania. YOU.. in your house reading this. Yes.  YOU.

The facts are like this:
GOD CARES FOR YOU.

IF you believe that... you will find He is always willing to take your fear and give you peace. Give you hope.

IF you choose to NOT believe that God cares about you... then.. it doesn't change the fact that He does. It just changes the way you are handling your fears.

I pray one of you reading this will be reminded that your Father cares for the birds of the air, and has numbered each hair on your head.
He never told us that life would NOT be scary.  He just promised that He would take whatever we give Him.
What are you afraid of? 
Give it to God.

XO,
Mrs. Older

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