Saturday, May 12, 2012


This is part 2.  Part 1 can be found at:

Here's how:

You will be tempted to concentrate on the ways your parent failed you. Train your mind to focus on how Jesus fills the gap. Psalm 27:10 "My father and mother have forsaken me, but the Lord will take me in."

Look for the ways God changes and uses you when you feel short-changed.

Dwell on anything positive that you can. If you can't find redeeming qualities in your parent, think of what God can/is doing in your life in spite of them.

You are not responsible for your parent, you are responsible for your responses. Accept that you can not change them, and allow God to change you for His glory.

Not only it is okay to be angry, there are times when we SHOULD be angry. The bible says to "be angry and do not sin." When you choose to forgive, you release your parents from having power over you. You release them into the hand of God. If you continue to dwell on your parents' mistakes, you will continue to make more of your own. Only keep specifics in mind for the purpose of learning from them and not repeating the same sin patterns, or for being able to sympathize with the plight of others.

Do not be decieving. Do be discerning. Use discretion and not deciet when communicating.(Jonathan to Saul-- 1 Kings 14:1, 19:1-7, 20) Saul was one who would go into extreme moods and mental states, similar to bi-polar or manic depression. There were times that his son Jonathan withheld information from his father, not to punish, but to protect either the kingdom or his friend David. There are times when one has to seperate from parents, but keep protection and reconciliation in mind.

Don't give your parents a reason to disqualify you. 1 Timothy 4:12

While you can observe your parents' actions, don't judge your parents' motives. Seek to understand them.
Don't try to be your parent's Savior. Do pray for favor so you can point them to the Savior.

Do NOT rebel. Resolve yourself to learning how to navigate bad or imperfect authority. One day, you may have to be under other authorities that you do not agree with: spouse, boss, pastor, politician, etc

Extend the mercy to your parent that God has extended to you. (Matt 18:21-35) Your parent may not deserve mercy from you, but neither do you deserve it from a perfect Heavenly Father.  You are able to give back not what others have given to you, but what God has given to you.

If your parents are too protective, remember they are seeing the most negative outcome while you are seeing the most positive. --Arliss Dickerson

Learn the Art of negotiation: Agree..Address..Alternatives. Agree to see things from their point of view, address the problem, and find alternate solutions.

Accept it if you can't connect on a heart level with your parent. Try to connect on SOME level--even if it's surface conversation.

Obey the Lord; submit (yield) to parents who still have authority over you. You have to master the Bible to know when you your parent's commands contradict your Heavenly Father's commands.

Seek to honor your parents, even when you can't or shouldn't obey them. It is the only commandment with a promise of blessing. (Ex 20:12, Deut. 5:16, 1 kings 14:43-45).

Honor their position even if you can't respect the person.


  1. Tonya,

    These are two well written posts. Rachel and I have a great amount of experience with this in dealing with her parents. Rachel has remarked that she felt she had a wondreful childhood and her parents were very loving when she was growing up. Something in the past few years changed though, and I think you're right, in a way it has to do with who they "worship". It is not only non-Christian parents that have this type of struggle. Her parents are Christians. Obviously, that does not make them infallible though.

    We seek to honor them by seeking restoration and reconciliation. We forgive them and we pray for them, even when the hurts rise again to the surface, because some pain never fully goes away.

    I think it is important for people, especially Christians, to understand too though that even if you forgive, even if you seek a restored relationship, honoring your parent does not mean forgetting the past. Just because you forgive your parent, does not mean you should automatically go back and pretent like nothing happen if they haven't repented and seek restoration as well. Sometimes we have to honor our parents from afar. Sometimes honoring them means distancing ourselves so as not to be in an abusive (whether physical, emotional, sexual, or spiritual abuse) environment anymore. Sometimes, the best way to honor our parents is to step back, forgive them everyday, and pray that they will someday accept that forgiveness and repent of their wrongdoing.

    I could go on, but I think you did an excellent job of writing what our hearts should be like when dealing with these types of hurts. It can be difficult, because nobody can hurt us like those that are supposed to love us, but thank God for His love and grace and the comfort of the Holy Spirit.

  2. Joe, I could not agree more. Thank you for sharing. It is impossible to talk through every specific situation. There are definately times to seperate for protection on many levels. When I spoke on this topic, I was able to give more thorough details than I can here. It sounds to me like you are seeking wisdom--every case is different and requires different steps.
    Thank you so much--praying with you two on your journey.