Archives For November 2014

scapegoat 223594422_afc5ffd696_z

Ok. If you clicked on this title, you may already be under some fear...or some conviction!

Here is what I know as a mom of many children:

I love each of children completely.

I would die for each of my children without question.

And even the accusation of me having a "favorite" child hurts my mom heart!

So if that is the case, how could I make one of our children the family scapegoat?

The word "scapegoat" comes from the story found in the Old Testament in Leviticus 16.

In the sacrifice system God enacted to cover the sins of the nation of Israel, the priests were commanded to ceremonially transfer the sins of the people to a goat. The goat was then released into the wilderness, thereby bearing the weight of the nation's guilt.

We need to understand that Jesus was our scapegoat. He bore the guilt of all our sins and our children’s sins, for “the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all.” Isaiah 53:6

But when dealing with conflict and failure within our families, there is something in us that still wants to assign blame.

In some families there is one person who is always blamed for problems and thereby carries the weight of the blame.... even when the problem is not truly that person's fault! This is called “scapegoating.”

Obviously, scapegoating a child is very, very dangerous to a child's development! It could lead to shame, guilt, broken relationships, depression, and a whole list of terrible issues.

If a parent makes one child a scapegoat, it can become a family tradition, with the other parent and the siblings joining in. If the family system is deeply involved in "scapegoating," they most assuredly need some serious help.

But what if the problem of "scapegoating" is happening in subtle ways that are not so easy to see?

* The kid who struggles most with remembering to clean up after himself gets blamed automatically in our mind when any mess appears.

* The argumentative child that seems to pick fights easily with his siblings gets blamed instantly when any kid disruption arises.

*The always-late child gets blamed when the family runs behind in getting to church (even when everyone else was slow to get to the car.)

Scapegoating can happen just because it seems so logical; we are busy and don't take time to collect all the facts!

So what can we do? Here are my 5 thoughts....and maybe you can think of more:

1.  Stay alert!
Since we know this can happen, we must keep a watchful eye on ourselves.

2. Have the same heart as Jesus.
Compassionate and just. Ever loving, truthful and forgiving.

3. Bring this issue into the light.
Talk about it as a family. Express a desire for your family to avoid this unhealthy and ungodly temptation to scapegoat anyone.

4. Stop it immediately.
When you note a subtle—or not so subtle—case of scapegoating happening, stop it in its tracks. That will take the wisdom and power of the Holy Spirit! Pray for the grace to break the cycle of singling out and blaming the scapegoated child. Forge a new family tradition of respect and love for each member, even when dealing with conflict, failure and disappointment.

5. Repent and let it go.
Sometimes after the problem of scapegoating has been resolved, the conflict lingers on because of hurt, bitterness, and unforgiveness. Help your family to get a fresh start with proper repentance. Ask the Lord to help you speak genuine, loving words of affirmation to all your children, including the one who was previously scapegoated. Then trust God to renew your relationships and write a new chapter in your family's life!

 

Image: Gianluca Ruggiero “Scapegoat” via Flickr Creative Commons
License: Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Gratefully linked to:  Making your Home Sing Monday

cornucopia 5206992274_a577d3febb_z
Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever. Psalm 107:1

Cherry family ch_ 12

Happy Thanksgiving from the Cherry Family

Image #1: Dutchbaby "Cornucopia" via Flickr Creative Commons

Embarkation_of_the_Pilgrims_-_Google_Art_Project

Were the Pilgrims heroes, or imperialistic opportunists?

Was God leading in the founding of our nation, or was the greed of man?

Were the Founding Fathers self-serving elitists?

Do the stories of the death of Indians prove that we should be ashamed of our American historical roots?

Is the spreading of the gospel a good thing, or an invasion of human rights?

This week we will celebrate Thanksgiving. This holiday traditionally leads our families to thank God not only for His manifold blessings, but also for our nation’s heritage. But many will not be doing either this week.

We are a nation at a crossroads. 

Revisionist historians have worked hard to control this young generation’s views of our nation.....and thereby shift our creeds and our actions. And I think we can all see they appear to be succeeding!

Are you familiar with the bestselling book A People's History of the United States? Howard Zinn wrote it in 1980, and many college and high school students are assigned to read it. It’s a revision of American history based on Marxist ideology, and it riddled with errors. Take a look at Daniel J.Flynn’s article “Howard Zinn's Biased History.

Parents, we cannot leave the teaching of history to the public systems and the media. We must help our children sort through the facts from the false indoctrinations. This week is a prime opportunity. Don't let the story of the Pilgrims die!

Do your kids know the miraculous story about Squanto? We have shared Eric Metaxas’ great book Squanto and the Miracle of Thanksgiving at our table many times.   It is also an ebook.

Here is another great article by the Chuck Colson: The Story of Squanto. It will fill you in on this exciting historical event.

As Christians, we are not interested in sugar coating the people of our past. We know that sin has been a problem in every age! But when we look back, we must acknowledge what our faithful God has done.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Image: Robert Walter Weir "Embarcation of the Pilgrims" via Wikipedia

 

Gratefully linked to   Making your Home Sing Monday

Doug Lisa Kalyn PIT

Let's face it. When our kids are hurt, struggling or in trouble.... We are in trouble too! Sometimes in small ways and sometimes in big ways!

 Doug and I know what it is like to feel:

confused
frustrated
disappointed
worried
fearful
angry
helpless

We are starting a new effort at Frontline Families and we want you to be in on it.

 It’s our first Parents in Trouble virtual event.  This is a 60 minute webinar for parents which will give you

Practical Help
Relationship Hope
Prayer Support

 There are two choices for you to attend:

Sunday, November 30  

8:00 pm eastern /7:00 pm central  

or

Thursday, December 4  

8:00 pm eastern/7:00 pm central

When our daughter Kalyn fell into trouble, we lived through an intense battle as parents.

We know you do not need another list of all your mistakes of the past. (You already have those well memorized!)

You need fresh hope and wisdom for going forward!

And you can get this help in the privacy of your own home.

This is a special time for you!

It is free help... open to you and any of your friends who need help.

To register and get your contact information, simply reply to this email.  

We are praying for you, especially during this holiday season!

Lisa and Doug

 P.S. Want to be involved, but not available at these times? Reply to this email and we can help.

 

Maddie 6835348742_687cf56516_z
How would you like your kids to use their phones to exchange texts, photos and videos anonymously with random strangers within your community?

Unfortunately, there’s an app for that… in fact, quite a few.

One of our Frontline Moms sent me Kira Lewis’ very helpful post The Worst Apps for Kids

Keeping up with teenagers and their apps can be a daunting task! I loved getting this simple-to-use list.

After all, most parents do not have time to keep up on all the new apps....that are springing up constantly. But rest assured, our kids learn about them very easily.

There are even apps that hide apps, so that parents cannot see what apps their kids have!

Here’s an important key: Get into your kids’ phones’ settings and assign a password so that they will not be able to download any apps without your permission. Kira tells us how to do this in her post.

Image Credit: Caroline “Maddie” via Flickr Creative Commons
 License: Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)