Writing and Home and Good Advice

May 6, 2020

I asked my daughter Rebekah  to join me on the balcony this morning.  “I need your advice,” I said (among the many rewards of homeschooling is wise children).  I made LaVazza in the French Press and brought her a San Pellegrino, then sat down with my journal. But before I, the Great Meeting Instigator, could present my thoughts, she began reading from 52 Hebrew Words Every Christian Should Know by Dave Adamson.

I wanted to talk about me.  Sigh.  Patience.  Wait, what was that?  About His mercies being new every morning?  The word is rachum.  I remembered why we were on the balcony.  Because not only was it morning, but it was a beautiful, shining, May morning.  A robin was worm hunting beneath us, and another one was pecking a bedroom window  for reasons unknown.  Perhaps he thought his reflection was a possible Mrs. Robin, and extremely attractive.  Perhaps, like me, he thought it was all about him.

Rebekah continued to read and I waited.  Quietly.  Surely I am smarter than that robin?  Finally, I talked.  “Shall I write fiction or non?”  What about this, and that, etc.?  Her answer brought a flirting, flittering thought from the back of my mind to the fore:  “Write what’s in your heart and hold nothing back.” 

What is in my heart?  Home.  Jesus and Home.  Home.

My fiction is about home, and my non-fiction as well.  Write both?  Then where to begin?  It’s Springtime.  Resurrection.  You don’t have to begin, merely resume with vigor.  The whole world’s all about singing a new song, and doing a new thing, and out with the old and in with the new.  And that’s marvelous.  Sometimes.

But sometimes it’s marvelous to go digging through all kinds of old stuff – barely begun stories and mostly finished manuscripts, journals, forgotten thoughts and notes, highlighted portions of old books from friends’ hearts.

They’re friends I’ve never met, but who wrote from their hearts unto mine, holding nothing back.  “Father, help me, direct me, anoint me, to write like that.  Even as you spoke to Rebekah’s heart and she passed it on to mine, speak to my heart so that I can pass it on to those who have home in their hearts.  Amen.”

That’s pretty much everyone.

Thanks for joining me.

P.S.  But what about that “hold nothing back” part?  Yikes.  That sounds quite messy.

Don’t Take Ownership, Don’t Give it a Name!

I was just reading a “Christian” doctor’s blog and parenting advice and as is so often the case, man’s “wisdom” via education has superseded the reverential “fear of the Lord” which is the beginning of wisdom.

What is obviously a demonic attack against this child’s (the subject of the blog post I was reading) life has been handled via giving it a name (she has a “syndrome”) and calling it “her” ailment.

The Bible tells us we have what we say, that there is the power of life and death in the tongue, and it also tells us, whether or not we’re too “educated” and sophisticated to accept it, that (John 10:10) we have an enemy who seeks only to “steal, kill and destroy.”

So, don’t think it’s doing a child any favors by getting someone to name a situation/behavior, maybe prescribe a drug, and call it good.  Good parenting requires common sense and backbone, and most of all, the wisdom that simply does not come because of letters by a name.

The enemy hates us and our kids, and we are called to stand up and fight, not lie down and accept “evil reports” as the Word calls words of death, or curses if you will, spoken by man.

When you give a child a label and encourage her to own it, when you give a problem a name, you legitimize and strengthen the issue.  Rather than saying, “Oh, she has this or that syndrome (what, did it fall out of the sky?), say, “God, You have every answer, every solution, and I won’t settle for anything less than Your very best for this child You gave me.  Thank You!  Amen.”

 

Just say, “Help!”

My daughter’s meltdown was right smack dab in the middle of mine, and while my stalwart husband was quietly nursing his own wounds over a perplexing disappointment.  But thank God for the woods.

It was there I received a phone call from my child saying she was ready to chuck it all and drive straight home to Colorado.  We talked and prayed through some things and I told her to first of all not make any decisions until after Fall Break (during which she will spend a week camping with beloved family in Oklahoma) and secondly to call her best buddy and ask if she can come over.  Most important of all, we got rid of the poisons due to taking offense, including being offended by a Christian “minister” who insulted homeschoolers (yes, Rebekah was homeschooled) in her presence.  But back to someone much more important – a true friend, and the one I told Rebekah to call.

“I don’t want to bother her, she’s doing a report (or something like that)” was Rebekah’s reply.  “Call her!  She’s called you crying before and you came to her rescue.  She’s also good at rescue.”

So, as Rebekah called her friend I called mine, who has known and loved my daughter all her life.  “Could you just call and encourage her and pray with her?” I asked, knowing it was a done deal, and a good deal.

There’s lots more to this story, like how God showed off the very next day for Rebekah and with one blessing after another throughout the day.  I’m talking BIG stuff and REAL breakthroughs, and beautiful blessings.  Isn’t that so often the way when we think we can’t take any more – victory is around the very next corner!

I pondered how often we don’t ask for help when we really need it, when we really should ask for it, and how we do ask for help when we really don’t need it.  And when I talked it over with my brother, Cal, he said this:  “It’s an honor to be asked for help.”  

So, let’s not be always pulling ourselves up by our bootstraps, and let’s know that it’s OK to ask for help.  Rebekah told me she didn’t like to call me when she was lonesome and upset, because she knew it would be hard for me to hear her cry.  “I didn’t want to put that on you,” she told me.  But she said that she’d learned her lesson, and wouldn’t be doing that any more.

Praise God!  How I HATE the thought that she would cry alone, all alone, so far from home.

I know God must feel the same way when we don’t come to Him with our troubles, and unburden our hearts to Him.

Thanks for listening,

Bev

P.S.  Speaking of asking for help, I haven’t posted recently because I have been trying and trying and really trying to figure out how to get back on this website – couldn’t sign in, and coudln’t figure out the problem.  Finally, I got my husband involved, and I’m happy to say he couldn’t figure it out for a good while, either.  But he did, and I’m posting again!

I have pictures to share very soon – some new decorating I’ve done.  I’m inordinately pleased with the outcome, especially as it cost almost nothing – there was great use of what was right under my nose!

https://1360khnc.com/

P.P.S.  Catch John and me, along with Crystal Lyons (crystallyons.com) tomorrow, Wednesday the 9th of October, at 8:00 am Mountain Time.  

We’ll be on https://1360khnc.com/  

What does it mean to “help” my husband?

I was pondering my wifely skills and shortcomings (praying He will “cleanse me from my secret faults”) this morning and asked God the question:  What does it mean to “help” my husband.  I know this word (Genesis 2:18) comes from the same Hebrew root translated in Psalm 54:4 where is says “God is my helper.”  Being like God to my husband?  Lord, what does that look like?  God loves unconditionally and faithfully.  God always forgives, always hears and listens, guides and guards, and looks for ways to bless.  He helps.

Helps.  The Ministry of Helps, I’ve been learning, is simply that:  helping where help is needed.  It includes but is not limited to, Holy Spirit-led ministering via a hug, listening ear, kind word, thoughtful deed, card, letter, call, or even an e-mail that says, “You’ve been on my heart and I just want you to know I love you,” etc.  And all of that is best served with Word-based, Holy Spirit-led prayer.

Is that something Christians just know how to do?  Apparently not or they’d also know the joy of it, and do it more often.  And more effectually.  Listen:  No one needs a “woe are we, such worms who only deserve death” prayer.  No one needs our lies added to Satan’s because we’re scriptural illiterates who think God has good days and bad days, and it’s a roll of the dice, and He’s probably not going to help anyway, but it’s worth a shot.  We guess.  Maybe.

People need prayers of faith based on the truth of God’s Word about His great and never-ending love for us.  People need prayers from people who know what Jesus accomplished on the cross.  They need prayers from people whose hearts are actually filled with the very Spirit of God because they’ve accepted the gift of Jesus and what He accomplished at Calvary.  People need to be ministered to in the power of this Love.

I weep when I begin ministering like this at church.  My heart is so grieved as I pray for people and realize their desperate need of prayer and of a caring touch, that sometimes I can hardly speak through the slinging snot.  What a picture, right?  No one seems to care that I have to blow l my nose throughout the prayer.  What they care about is being cared about.  I realize as the Holy Spirit reveals hearts to me during prayer, that people are broken-hearted and disconnected.  They are weak, weary, and vulnerable to that ever-prevalent lie of the enemy:  No one cares a single thing about you.

I have learned that even my adult children, who have been taught from their very beginnings that they are more precious than words can say, are susceptible to this lie.  And since this lie comes at them continuously in some form or fashion, I must continuously speak and pray the truth.

The tendency is to see a problem in an adult child’s life and to lament it, pray that situation changed or certain influences removed, and to frown really hard in the meantime.  But those children need equipping.  “Equipping” sounds like tools and gear and rules and how-to instructions.  But those are physical things, and must be preceded by the spiritual.

Let me clarify. I’ve been considering the incredible pressures my children face right now.  I’ve been doing a little more worrying than I should (any worrying is more than I should worry) and a little less praying than I should, and a little more speaking the problem than I should (yep, ANY speaking the problem is more than I should speak).  My daughter, Hannah, for an example, is fighting numerous hard battles right now.  She wants to excel at all things, and let no one down ever (especially God) while in the midst of extreme responsibilities and demanding/needy people, but without extreme support.

Except for her parents.  We are extreme support.  We are equippers.  We don’t say, “Well, Hannah has her act together, Hannah reads the Word and prays more diligently than do her siblings, Hannah will be fine,” as we focus on the others.

No!  That should not be the reward for her efforts.  The squeaky wheels shouldn’t be the only ones getting the grease. When I sense there is a difficulty, and when I don’t, there is still a difficulty, or very possibly a host of difficulties.  It’s time, not only to pray for Hannah as usual, but to pray with her.  To let God use me to bless my child.

As He does.  It’s such a blessing when I call and say, “I want to pray for you,” and then to be used by God to speak things I had no idea about, but that bless and strengthen and help her.  I did this recently only after several days of prayer and consideration, and a two-hour quiet time with Jesus in the Word and in prayer.  This meant that through my prayers He was speaking to her heart, blessing her heart, strengthening and helping her, giving her perspective on things that were troubling her.  Bringing her peace, power and an undergirding for her day.  Equipping her.  It’s my job.

The Word talks about equipping the saints, and we’re all too ready to sign on for that:  Oh come all ye saints and listen unto me.  I shall equip you!!!  But we are to start where it all starts.  At home.  We come before the Throne of Grace for our personal equipping, putting on the full armor of God, hearing His voice, heeding His voice, seeking Him and basking in His goodness and grace.  Then, and only then are we equipped to equip.

We moms are also ready to sign on for equipping our kids first, and our husbands next, or last, or never.  But that essential time in the Word and prayer will straighten out all the crookedness in our thinking, and we will come to see the truth about “helping” our husbands:  We are acting as God’s most essential ambassadors, His equippers.

Just as the Queen of England has no need to drive the car, neither do we have to be front, center, and “in charge” when we know our true worth to God as Homemakers.  Let us embrace, accept, and occupy our thrones as He intends.