By Lisa Cherry
I hate broken relationships. They wreak havoc in your home.
It's no fun at all to be at odds with your child …who is someone whom you would die for ...not to mention live your whole life serving!
And it usually is not even fair... well, usually.
(Except when the brokenness is largely caused by your own parental failure that you would give anything to rerun and change. I know; I’ve been there. )
So what are parents to do when they find themselves in the midst of
Parent child relationships?
Here are 7 P's I have found helpful to restore them:
Perspective... When strife, pain or separation happens, it feels like the pain will go on forever. But this is rarely the case. Keep a time perspective. Recognize the last chapter of your family's story has not yet been written. See Ecclesiastes 7:8
Purpose... Remember the design or purpose of your relationship. You are a parent, not a pal. You have the opportunity to disciple your child, not just raise him/her. Your Kingdom of God purpose is higher than the world will ever understand. And no lofty purpose is ever achieved without some struggle and battle. See Proverbs 22:6
Passion... Rekindle in your own heart your goals. Let passion arise to achieve healthy relationships. Not just because healthy is fun, but also because healthy is fruitful. Decide you will never quit; you will never give up; and you will never give in. See James 1:12
Pickle... Sour is never going to work. Get rid of the pickle in your own heart...NOW! Soften yourself. Add sugar to your tongue. Get rid of the scowl. And watch emotions start to shift even when facts have not changed. See Proverbs 16:24
Play... Even during your toughest parenting seasons, there is still no reason to lose your force of joy. Let joy bring your family strength. Remember how to laugh. Go back to how you know to play. Stir up memories of happier times and watch God pour out healing balm. See Nehemiah 8:10
(Re)pent… Okay, I know this is not really a P! But do it anyway. Find your own error, even if it is only 5% of the total problem. Sow your own repentance as a seed to the Lord and as a seed of humility to your child. Do not "pent" falsely over that truth which needs to stand, but trust the Lord to sort out the differences. See Proverbs 16:33
Patience... Wait it out. One day at a time. Praying and trusting. Resting and believing. Acting only when He says to act. Knowing He wants restoration even more than you can imagine. See Isaiah 58:12
Our family is no stranger to the world of broken parent/child pain. I did not think it was possible to hurt so badly over losing my mother/daughter relationship. But I learned our God can and will heal our lives. To read our family's story, check out our book, Unmask the Predators.
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On February 15 , my new book Not Open: Win the Invisible Spiritual Culture War will be released on Amazon. You can read a sample chapter of Not Open here. And find out if you are open or not by taking this quiz.