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by Lisa Cherry

Minnesota ATFI had a very unusual experience this past weekend that I doubt I will ever forget. I spoke to a group of parents lined up on benches in a women's hockey team dressing room!

Why were we in such an odd location? Because our Minneapolis ATF event had a little challenge with its extra meeting room space and it was the only available room we could find. After my main session to our large group of parents, I offered an extra small group meeting for those parents who were either currently in crisis with their kids or for those who wanted to know how to avoid or handle a crisis in the future. I figured I would see a handful of takers.  Instead, 35 parents followed me down to the basement "meeting room."Locker Room ATF

We felt like a covert operational squad gathered together to hear the team captain give the directives. And I suppose that is what we were! Parents eager to hear battle strategies from the Lord to successfully wage war against the Kingdom of Darkness and the enemy's seductive plans to destroy our Christian kids' futures.

The stories of crisis in the room were quite varied and staggering. Addictions. Broken relationships. Depression. Sexual immoralities. .....But as we shared together the truth of God's word, the principles that applied for each family's  unique deliverance were remarkably universal. We talked about the 12 step Victory Battle Plan that God led us through when we were struggling with our daughter Kalyn.

I was shocked how much our time together meant to me personally as a mom. As I relived what the Lord had taught us, I recognized my own need to "shore up" my emergency preparedness even today. Living a life of alertness and spiritual sensitivity is critical in parenting today's teens. Learning to control  my own reactions can prevent me from accidentally pouring gasoline on smoldering embers and creating my own raging fire of destruction in the lives of my teens.

How about you? Are you prepared with a strategy to handle tough parenting situations? Would you be able to keep yourself together in the face of disappointing, damaging , or dangerous news from your teen? Are you as practiced in disaster preparedness for your children's lives as you are in disaster preparedness for your house and property?

Leading our children through our hostile culture could mean some skirmishes and attacks!

Step one of our 12 step Plan stood out as critical to our group's discussion. Let me take a moment and share it with you today.

Step 1 to handling a parenting emergency..........Stop. Drop. And pray!

I must train myself to interrupt my own  tendency to try to fix tough situations with quick parental words. Stop the tongue action, Lisa. Invite the Lord personally into that moment of decision making and then pray for His wisdom. Do not rush the moment. Hit the pause button if you must. Put the child needing assistance on hold and take the time needed to fashion a Godly response.

I remember the night our world came crashing to a halt when we discovered an $800 cell phone bill and a secret sexually abusive relationship with a middle age man and our 15 year old high achieving Christian daughter. You talk about shocking trauma! Unfortunately, out of our parental shock, hurt, and fear, we launched some horrible words toward our daughter that could not be easily retrieved from the air waves. In other words, we blew it.

If I had it to live over, I would have done things so differently. But just as the fire departments of America have trained us to not run if our clothes catch on fire but to stop, drop, and roll, we must train ourselves as parents to Stop, Drop, and Pray during the heated moments of crisis in our parenting.

The bad news is I might face some unforeseen emergency again in our family's future. The good news is I will have many opportunities to hone the needed skills to handle the big moments during the little skirmishes of our daily life together.

Stop. Drop. And pray.

I will never forget our prayer circle in our odd little meeting room in Minneapolis when we asked the Lord to equip us to meet our adversary head on. Equipped. Humbled. And armed with His word.

Are you ready to face whatever the devil would try to throw your family's way? Click here leave a comment. This week I will cover a few more of those critical Battle Plan strategies. If you have not seen our book, Unmask the Predators yet, I encourage you to check it out. A prepared parent is a victorious parent!.

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This  month we are featuring our resource kit called Unmask the Predators. Click here to get help for your tough parenting battles.

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March special: Unmask the Predators Parents Kit. Includes Unmask book, workbook, and six part video teaching. $42 value. $40 regular price....but this month only $25 plus free shipping!!!  Click here to visit our store.

My Hubby and the Lobster

Lisa Cherry —  October 7, 2012

Doug with lobsterBy Lisa Cherry

After 31 years of marriage I can joyfully report....... the honeymoon in our marriage is not over!

Doug and I had a chance to take some extra time after our recent ministry trip to the Amherst, Massachusetts Acquire the Fire.

It was two days of husband-and-wife time that we greatly needed. We explored Connecticut, lounged at the pool, and gazed into each others’ eyes.

And…we looked for a few unusual thrills. Like finding the local's favorite seafood shop and attempting a lobster extraction ourselves.

I'm sure all you coastal ladies would be laughing at our following of the diagram.

Ladies, are you sowing any honeymoon fun and adventure into your marriage?

Are you taking time as a couple even in the midst of raising a family?

Are you laughing together, talking about something other than the kids, and cracking a few lobsters?

Just for the public record… My husband is my best friend…my greatest supporter...and my only lover. And he is worth and deserving of my focus and attention.

How about you? Did you need that reminder today?

(By the way....I personally dislike lobster. Always have. But I love lobster with Doug. Know what I mean?)

Gratefully linked to:

The Better Mom

Marital Oneness Mondays

Marriage Monday

Modest Mondays



By Lisa Cherry

Here’s my precious granddaughter, Kyla Grace (age 10 months), all smiles in the arms of her mommy Kalyn during our trip to the Smoky Mountains. 

It was her first family vacation, and she had lots of fun with her cousins, aunts, uncles, parents and grandparents.

But Kyla was not so happy during the last two hours of our trip home.

She cried, and cried, and cried some more. 

During the second hour of her loud serenade, I was prompted to add two more items to the list in my last post:

 11. Just laugh when the grandbaby is the one driving everyone’s nerves raw. She is not your responsibility and she doesn’t want Grammy right now anyway!

12. Make sure you keep extra control of your teenagers when babies are crying. Baby screaming makes for teen screaming….and they are my responsibility!

Don't miss the other posts in this series:

On a Lighter Note…Cherry Family Vacation, Part 1

Cherry Family Vacation, Part 2: Departure Traumas

Cherry Family Vacation, Part 3: Joy!

Cherry Family Vacation, Part 4: Record Bike Ride

Ten Lessons This Mom Learned on Family Vacation This Year, Cherry Family Vacation, Part 5

Linking up to Women Living WellHearts 4 Home,  Beautiful Thursdays, and Just for Fun Fridays.

By Lisa Cherry

Another one has come and gone…

…A wonderful week of sharing life with my whole family in an exotic cabin in the Smoky Mountains.

As I write this, we are in the van on our way home, in the final two hours of what should be have been a seven hour drive.  So far it’s taken us 9 ½ hours. 

I have decided to record my top lessons for other moms who still might have their vacation ahead of them this year.

    1. Always pack your Quaker Oatmeal canister yourself where you can keep a mom-eye on it.  Eight cups of oatmeal sprinkled generously throughout your possessions in the trailer is not a pretty sight.
    2. Take extra towels. For some reason the cabin was not exactly equipped for 18.
    3. Remember to check the weather forecast before you plan your daily outings. Unless, of course, you want a front row parking place at the mountain top view when visibility has reduced to about five feet.
    4. Ear plugs are a must. You never can tell when those young ones will all decide to howl about their new surroundings.
    5. Bring extra bread. That way if the kids want to feed some to the birds or fish, you will not feel grumpy about it.
    6. Walk hand in hand with your sweetie as you gaze over at your brood. Smile and realize that every moment as a family is a precious reward from the Lord.
    7. Learn to enjoy squeeze cheese. It’s bland, artificially flavored and is horrible for you, but nothing screams vacation food like that little can.
    8. You can never pack too many baby wipes. Even though my youngest is five, we are addicted to them.
    9. Find a way to exercise every day, so when you realize you have lived a whole week in carb overloading, you can at least comfort yourself with the fact that you tried.
    10. Enjoy every single memory. Even the squabbles and even the spills. As the children get older, you will wish for these noisy days again!

Don't miss the other posts in this series:

On a Lighter Note…Cherry Family Vacation, Part 1

Cherry Family Vacation, Part 2: Departure Traumas

Cherry Family Vacation, Part 3: Joy!

Cherry Family Vacation, Part 4: Record Bike Ride

Baby Kyla's Serenade: Cherry Family Vacation Part 6 (Addenda to Ten Lessons)

Linked up with Top Ten Tuesday  and Works for Me Wednesday.

By Lisa Cherry

A record 11 mile ride around Cade's Cove in the Smoky Mountains for little Lydia...with a little help from Daddy and brother Nathan.

Don’t miss the other posts in this series:

On a Lighter Note…Cherry Family Vacation, part 1

Cherry Family Vacation, Part 2: Departure Traumas

Cherry Family Vacation, Part 3: Joy!