I was once like you

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Dear Mamas. I too remember the moments of sleepless nights, sticky kisses. late night feedings and brain fogged days. I remember having my littles ones in car-seats and lugging a suitcase of supplies everywhere I went. I remember training my children to sit in church and obey, making them eat those darn green beans ( only to have him barf them up all over the Pastors dinner table.).  I remember my adventure loving boys running in the rain and rolling in the mud. I remember Winnie the Pooh, Thomas the Tank Engine and Dora the Explore ad nauseum.I was once like you. I thought I had the ticket to parenting. I read the Pearls book .

Then my littles started to grow up.

Now my oldest is 16 and I’ve discovered what hormones are and how they turn my muddy, sticky , once little man into a ball of contradictions.

I know right now you look at me with my teens and think,”What is she doing?”I’ve heard your comments. I know what you say to the man-boy. I have a word of advice for you.

Don’t criticize those you aren’t emotionally invested in.

I’ve spent 16 years training my children. I’ve cried, prayed, laughed and loved them. I’ve spent thousands on food and clothing. I’ve spent countless hours building bridges and tying heart-strings. I don’t recall you being there. Maybe I missed something?  Think of all the hate speech coming out of the political world, is it helping change people? Is it making people rethink their lives? No it’s creating greater division then we already have. Negativity breeds negativity. If you don’t love those you are criticizing, they will know and in turn they will not respect you. You then just become another unrelatable person trying to judge what you don’t understand. Love =time spent. Have you spent time with these kids?

Judgement is better received when coming from a place of love rather than criticism. 

My children know I love them. My children know I am their biggest fan. When I correct my children the know I do it from a place of love. They know this because I have spent 16 years making sure they know. I have sat in tree stands at 5:00 am hunting in 20 degree weather when one was going through a difficult time.I stood my ground against those that belittled him . I cheered them on in soccer, cross-country, track and field  wrestling, public speaking, horse back riding and life. Were you there cheering too? I spent worried nights up with seizures. Were you there? Were you there when my daughter stopped breathing from a Tonic Clonic seizure? Were you there as two frantic parents tried to bring life back into the precious little 11-year-old? Did you sob with me? Did you hold the barf bucket of my 7-year-old as she vomited for a year? Did you worry about the test results? Did you weep with my dyslexic son as he felt shame because of his school? Did you have that lump in your throat when he overcame his fear and finally joined wrestling?  Were you up nights talking to my teens about life ,girls, and God? Did you have your heart ripped out when your son lost a good friend over a girl? Love spends time. it’s not about me. it’s about them. So when I tell my children words of wisdom they know I worked hard to show them I love them and want their best. Do you want their best or are you glad they are failing?

Don’t assume anything.            

I know you think I’m lenient. You think I’d never let him get away with that. Why isn’t she saying something? How could she let him have that cell phone in church? I can’t believe he questioned the Pastor,teacher, police officer, political leader. Did you see what he posted on FB? Can you believe she let her children have Snap Chat, Instagram, a phone a tablet.Does she even monitor them? The answer to all of those is , YES. You see I don’t like being embarrassed. Do you? I just decided to follow the Bible and Do unto others as I would have them do unto me. I know ,I know what  a thought. What an outrageous idea. Yeah, I think so too. I am never going to publicly humiliate my children. I also will never discipline my kids because you think I should. Remember I gave my self to these kids. I have tied the heart-strings and you better believe I’m leaving a bridge for them in case they ever get lost. This mama is leaving the light on! My kids will always be able to come back home.Just because you don’t see me discipline my kids don’t ever assume I’m not doing it. I love my kids.

 I am not worried about how my kids make me look ,I am worried about their hearts.

“And it was so, when the days of their feasting were gone about, that Job sent and sanctified them, and rose up early in the morning, and offered burnt offerings according to the number of them all: for Job said, It may be that my sons have sinned, and cursed God in their hearts. Thus did Job continually.” Job 1:5  

You see my kids are definitely gonna embarrass me. I count on it. They are going to lose their way. I’m going to cry myself to sleep. I’m going to hold onto my Savior and plead for their souls. I lost my way too. We all have. Most importantly, I don’t want my kids to curse God in their hearts. I know you look at them like rebellious teens. You think they need a good talking to and a reprimand. I’d ground that kid for that. Everyone always has good advice for other peoples’ kids. What you can’t see is my child’s heart. Neither can I, therefore please be careful the way you criticize. I want my kids to serve a Great God. I don’t want them to curse God in their hearts. I know some of you think because you are the deacon, Pastor or family with a ton of kids it grants you the right to pass judgement. I know you try to teach me. When you speak to my kids it’s really about teaching me. I sure need help. This parenting thing is hard. I messed it up. I start over but you know what My husband and I together decide what’s best for our family. I’m pretty sure we will answer for our kids someday. Make sure you are prepared to answer for yours. Let me give you a helpful life lesson. Mind your own business. You have enough to worry about. trust me. Your family needs those heart-strings tied and those memories made. I’m working on my children’s hearts. You work on yours.

parenting GPS

This is the most important one of all

 Love covers a multitude of sins.  

Do you know this is something that every successful marriage has? It’s called grace. Please show some. Love my kids. I could use your love, your prayers. Save your judgement for the prayer closet. Get on your knees and bring those kids before an All knowing, Ever Wise Savior. I want your prayers. I want your love. I don’t know anyone who has ever changed by negative criticism. Love sure does cover a multitude of sins. Please overlook their mistakes and foolish teenage drama. Please love them. This generation will never stay in church or with God if you just condemn them. They need love. Please believe in them. Everyone needs to know that they have someone rooting for them. Be that person.

This video is for all the children who got lost on the way.

 

About Barb Barker

Homeschooling mom of 4 children( two with Dyslexia). Wife of Dan, my love for 118 years. Live on 60 acres in NW PA. I love Ron Paul and I'm a Christian! Never wanted kids and never wanted to homeschool!! So here I am, Four kids and a Farm!

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