My readers know that certain articles strike me as critical. Seeing numerous children in our clinic for the primary complaint of behavioral challenges means that I talk with numerous guilt-ridden parents. Guilty because they can’t fine the key to make their child better- to make them NOT difficult. By the time they see me, they have often spent thousands on doctor’s visits and therapist’s appointments. They have often gone through counseling not only for the wellbeing of the child but also for the life of their marriages.
Having a “difficult child” makes for a very difficult stress-filled life.
Therefore this article is a must read for these parents- no, for all parents. I know that I will reread this a few times for myself.
For those parents who have endured the stares and accusations of outsiders, this reminds you that your child’s choices are not under your control. You are not God. You are not their Holy Spirit.
Yes, you are the critical influence in their childhood years, but you are the steward – not the Master. God will hold you responsible for your stewardship, not your child’s choice to obey or rebel.
For those who have only looked in from the outside, please realize that the inner family life with difficult children can be very overwhelming. Please hold your tongue and instead try to reach out a helping hand. Realize that the outward behavior may arise from a myriad of sources from a not so obvious mental disability to a more obvious medical illness to old-fashioned sin in a child’s own heart to a combination of many factors like these. The issues are rarely straightforward and the entanglements often run deep. Likely, the parent is already broken and ashamed, recognizing something is wrong and desperately trying to right the situation for their child and for their entire family. Heaping more condemnation on them is simply adding to the perfect storm of their lives at the moment.
If nothing else, do the following:
- Seek to understand the particular challenges they are facing.
- Determine to share this article with them.
- Commit to pray for their situation.
May this bless you and others towards a healthier more abundant life.
Comment below with any questions!