So, how about you? Are you living the dream or are you just getting by in the day-to-day? I think a lot of it is a matter of perspective. This single parent lifestyle isn't easy, but it isn't always hard. How are you interpreting your situation? Do you see it through the lens of bitterness, betrayal, loneliness or hurt? Or are you looking through the lens of hope, God's promise and success? Truth be told we all probably waiver back and forth between both eye-goggles.
In this new America that we are raising our sons and daughters, it can seem like a scary place and our goggles can become foggy with worry, anticipation and fear. It can feel like we are fighting a lose-lose battle. I mean let's be real here. We are Christians in a world that is trying to pull our children away from our faith and values every day. Not only are we doing our very best to raise godly children alone, but we are facing at every turn the possibility of losing a spiritual battle. I will never forget the day when my 4th grade son stepped into the car after school and before even saying hello to me, asked, "Mom, what is a homosexual?" Not at all the conversation I thought I'd be having with my 10-year-old, as I picked him up from school that day.
How can we protect our children, uphold our values and still feel like we are "living the dream"? I am not going to pretend that it is going to be easy and a basket of joy, but perspective can help quite a bit.
1) Shower Your Children In Prayer. It is probably the most important thing you should do for your children. Pray protection, grace and mercy over their lives. I read Psalm 91 over my son each day.
2) Lead By Example. Be the person you want your son or daughter to be. If that is positive, spiritual and hopeful, be that.
3) Address Issues When You Need To. We are adults and know much more than our children will or should. Only address issues with them when it is time for them to know. For example, explaining homosexuality with my 10-year-old wasn't on my "to do" list at his age, but because he asked, it became priority. Know what your children are exposed to and equip them with head knowledge from you before they hear it from others.
4) Know The Word Of God. How often to you and your best friend talk? If you had a book about your best friend with all the things you needed to know to have a successful friendship, would you read it? Reading God's word is imperative to having a relationship with Him. I guarantee you a certain peace if you devote yourself to scripture and it will greatly help with your perspective.
5) Keep Watch. We are to never let our guard down. Always stay on top of your situations, people that you are around and situations that can cause you or your children to stumble. Life can be a wonderful enjoyment and should be, but be mindful of the moments that steer you into the wrong direction. Your children are watching and will follow you.
This life is meant to be enjoyed. America may be heading down some scary paths but our God is bigger than all of that. He may not change circumstances but He will get us and our children through. You are not alone and you can definitely stay on the right path while "living the dream".
Psalm 91 (Insert Your Child's Name)
1 Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.[a]
2 I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress,
my God, in whom I trust.”
from the fowler’s snare
and from the deadly pestilence.
4 He will cover you with his feathers,
and under his wings you will find refuge;
his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.
5 You will not fear the terror of night,
nor the arrow that flies by day,
6 nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness,
nor the plague that destroys at midday.
7 A thousand may fall at your side,
ten thousand at your right hand,
but it will not come near you.
8 You will only observe with your eyes
and see the punishment of the wicked.
and you make the Most High your dwelling,
10 no harm will overtake you,
no disaster will come near your tent.
11 For he will command his angels concerning you
to guard you in all your ways;
12 they will lift you up in their hands,
so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.
13 You will tread on the lion and the cobra;
you will trample the great lion and the serpent.
I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name.
15 He will call on me, and I will answer him;
I will be with him in trouble,
I will deliver him and honor him.
16 With long life I will satisfy him
and show him my salvation.”