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Showing posts from May, 2020

Rules for Disagreeing

I drew up this chart for my children the other day and, as always, learned more than they did. The most important thing I learned from this is the concept of waiting to discuss an issue. I don't think we really can hear another person's point of view so long as we are still brooding or feeling offended or trying to defend ourselves. Anger, pain, and fear block our acceptance of new information. This brings me to a number of different issues. 1) What if you recognize the other person is angry, hurt, or afraid, but they insist on talking about an issue? 2) What if every time you enter a situation you continue to feel angry, hurt, or afraid? Can you never discuss that situation? 3) How do adults work through their anger, hurt, or fear? Question 1: What do we do if another person is angry, afraid, or hurting but they still insist on discussing the issue. First, I don't think it's our job to mention that we think they're too mad to think straight. That w

An Explanation of Authority

This is how I explained authority to my children the other day. We were a little confused and needed clarification. God has the authority over everyone because he made us. He has pre-determined everyone's function or purpose or role. This means God has the authority to tell everyone what they ought to do, think, feel, and be. Beneath God is Jesus who also had a huge role in creation and who also has authority both in heaven and earth (Mt 28:28). Beneath Jesus is the angels, which I happen to think includes the devil and demons. A rudimentary illustration of authority and its ranks for children Next in the hierarchy of power comes the kings, presidents, tzars, dictators or what-have-you. Beneath them, at least in the USA, we have state governors and then city mayors. Somewhere in there we also have the military, police, firemen, teachers, superintendents, judges, bosses, etc. At the bottom is parents over children and children over pets and toys. My children enjoyed illu

I'm Here. You're Safe.

We went to Sunset Beach today. The kids messed about in the sand, and Phil dug a big hole with a child's shovel. Benny was nervous about the crashing waves. He would plod towards the wet sand and then back-peddle into my arms, clutching me as I lifted him above an approaching wave. "I'm here. You're safe," I'd say and then kiss him three times on the head before setting him down. He'd venture out again, returning to me every thirty seconds or so. I'd say it again. "I'm here. I've gotcha." Kisses.  And saying that over and over again to a child who's worried about something new, something I know to be wonderful and beautiful and powerful finally penetrated my own thick skull.  "I'm here. I've gotcha. You're safe." Kisses (or not if that's too mushy for you.) I think I get about thirty seconds away from that voice before I start fretting again. And then I turn right around and run into th

More Than A Virus

Nothing is  that wasn't before in your heart laying dormant waiting for this unsettling to show it. The exposed organ shrinks from the air and hides from the light. It will fight for cover behind these quibbles about masks and isolation, bankruptcy and bordom, immunities and selfishness, my way versus your's. But these are not it; They are merely the instruments in the hands of the surgeon, opening your heart. Will you see what lies there or will you grope for gauze, shouting, "You don't understand! I must do this! There's no other way!" Will you hear those words echo off the empty chambers  of your heart and understand  that it can be filled  another way?