About Your Struggle….

Dear Son/Daughter,

I know you’re struggling. I can see it. And because I’m your mom, I know your heart and that you want to overcome. Can I share something with you that God has been showing me lately?

So often when we are dealing with something difficult, we will make a good amount of progress and then we give up because we think “it’s too hard.”

Let’s face it. There are oodles of things in life that are difficult. Starting with getting up when the alarm goes off, meeting new people, going against the flow, working out, eating right, overcoming a bad habit, establishing a new one, etc., etc.,

But is it really too difficult? When the alarm goes off how hard is it for me to get my body out of bed? And when I’ve had one brownie…really? It’s too hard for me not to have another?!

Think about it.

The Lord showed me a scripture in Deuteronomy 30:11 that surprised and encouraged me. It says, “Now what I am commanding you today is not too difficult for you or beyond your reach.”

Okay, if God says the things I struggle with are not “too difficult for me or beyond my reach..” is it true?!… then why do I think it is?

In thinking about it, I think it’s because I/we want – instant gratification.

I want that other brownie – NOW!
I don’t want to get out of bed – I’m tired!
I can’t go against my “friends” – I’ll be alone…
I don’t feel like exercising – I’ve had a hard day OR I’ve got a hard day in front of me!

We all hate to be uncomfortable. We avoid it. Did you ever notice that sometimes by trying to avoid pain or being uncomfortable we create more hardship for ourselves?

An example of that:

  • When the alarm goes off and we hit snooze – then we run late and start our day stressed, trying to get somewhere on time, and when we’re late we feel defeated.
  • What about when we try to make friends and join in with others that are exciting – but not quite the kind of people we really want to be close to… after a while we realize we are becoming like them…
  • How about that overeating or choosing not to work out? Then we give up the chance to feel good about ourselves.

It may be difficult to fight the battles that are part of our desire to overcome… but when we do the opposite of what God says is best, we don’t have a peace in our hearts. And things are even harder.

As I watch you struggle, I want to remind you that you’re not alone. Really – God loves you so much He sent the Holy Spirit to walk through this with you. That’s God’s power in you. That’s what sets you apart. Makes you different. You can rely on God’s grace and his power working through you. You know that verse that says that God will not give us more than we can bear? He will provide a way out of every temptation. I know sometimes when I’m tempted I see that way out. Usually it’s a thought that comes to mind, “Hey, don’t do that, do this instead.” Shamefully, I sometimes ignore it. But, God is true to His word – he does provide a way out! Watch and see next time you’re tempted. Perk your ears and eyes to see it and dare to take that “way out”!

Then, our faith will be stronger and we will see…

The enemy is a liar…

IT’S NOT TOO HARD!

And when we’ve overcome the struggle – to face another one down the road – we will see that God sends the Holy Spirit to walk with us, talk with us, listen to us, counsel us and be our friend. He cheers us on and keeps us company when all others have no clue what we’re going through.

We are blessed! To know the Lord. Let’s walk in the joy of that relationship. You and I both know it’s not always easy, but let’s be honest…

It’s really not “too hard” either!

We’re all walking through the same journey. We’re all overcoming day by day! I love you and I love that you are part of my “walk”!

Cheering for you!
Mom

God’s assurance to you:
Deuteronomy 30:11 Now what I am commanding you today is not too difficult for you or beyond your reach.

John 14:16 And I will ask the Father, ad He will give you another Comforter, Counselor, Helper, Intercessor, Advocate, Strengthener, Standby, that He may remain with you forever

I Corinthians 10:13 No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.

About Self Esteem…

Dear Daughter,

It’s been so exciting to watch you growing up. And now, that you are becoming a young lady, I see you trying to make sense of so many things in life.

There are a great number of different things that attempt to tell you what you’re worth. The magazines expect you to be perfect, the newspapers want you to be a successful businesswoman, the peers at school or work want you to be beautiful and popular, the billboards and movies want you to be sexy… it goes on and on.

There’s a lot of pressure for a young lady. Pressure to be beautiful. Pressure to be popular and well-liked.

It’s easy to forget the important things. It’s easy to forget that God made you uniquely and even, if by chance, you are missing an arm or have a scar across your face you are beautiful.

You are beautiful.

I have watched you for years. You have so much goodness in you. You light up a room with your smile and bring such delight to those who love you.

As your mom, I encourage you not to let the world define who you are. Or tell you what your value is. You know in your heart, you are a precious young lady. When you feel the tug on your heart telling you, “You don’t need to do that to prove you have value,” – listen. Believe it. That is the Creator who made you. His opinion is the one that matters. His opinion and His love for you will never change. He will never steer you wrong.

Your friends are in the same place you are. They may look like they have it all figured out (whatever that means!), but they don’t. Often they too wear a veil of confidence and are desperately trying to fit in.

Realize that you are uniquely you. You don’t need to fit in. You are uniquely you. Figure out what excites you about your future; set some goals; and find some like-minded friends that can walk that way with you. Supporting you. Not encouraging you to be “one of them” and “do what they do.” True friends want the best for you. Self seeking “friends” want you to validate them in their craziness and insecurities.

Do you remember that movie, “A Walk to Remember?” The main character was a young high school girl who didn’t fit in.  The other kids mocked her, made fun of her, because she dressed kind of frumpy, she kept to herself, she carried her bible to class, and was very different from the popular crowd.  What was unusual, was that the girl was quietly confident.  She knew she had value beyond what all the other kids could see.  I’m sure their spiteful remarks hurt her, but she didn’t let them change who she was..

In fact, when the most popular guy in the school came to her and asked her to help him, she agreed with one condition… “As long as you promise not to fall in love with me.”  He laughed and sneered and said that that would be no problem!

But she knew something he didn’t.  He couldn’t see her value.  He had no clue how special she was.  He was caught up in the mindset that the other kids had and getting his value from the majority.  She knew she was something special.

As the story unfolds, he falls head over heels in love with her.  He, in the end, shows the others her great value.  They see beyond themselves and their petty attitudes to see there was something more…

And that’s what I’m encouraging you to do.  Walk in confidence.  You are magnificient! No matter who can see it or not…  Be comfortable with the young lady God made you to be.  Walk out your days doing only what you know in your heart is right for you.  Don’t get caught up in what other’s think of you.  Your value is far beyond what the popular majority thinks.
We all love approval.  We all love people to like us.  And that’s okay.  As long as it doesn’t sway us from who we really are.  Stand firm.  You are beautiful through and through.

I’m proud to be your mom!

With all my love and admiration.

About Pornography…..

Dear Son,

You may think it a bit strange to have your mom write you this letter, but as a mom I care deeply about every aspect of your life.  I care enough to talk about the tough topics, and respectfully, without invading your privacy.  But I want you to know my heart.

As a young man, there are countless images coming at you as you walk through your “normal” day.  The internet and all the pop-ups, advertisements in the sidebars, billboards as you drive, magazines as you check out, TV shows, movies, and commercials, even your cell phone..

How does a young man stay focused and pure?  How do you fight the good fight? It’s clearly a tough battle.  The more you look around, the more you see…

As sure as God has a plan for your life, the enemy has a plan for your life.  It’s been said one of the enemy’s greatest attributes is that he is patient.  He will wait and wait and wait…. He has no problem in waiting until you vulnerable.  You see, he wants to steal something from you.  When you’re tired, when you’re alone, when you’re lonely, when you care a little too much what your friend thinks….

Pornography is one of those areas that he has a plan for your life.  If he can distort your view of sexuality and the beauty of what God created it to be – he will.  And with most young men, he can.

Think about it….

  • He can mess up your self worth – as you look at porn and feel ashamed that you “did it”.
  • He can mess with your future as you don’t feel worthy to fulfill your dreams
  • He can mess with your marriage as you take those images into your marriage – and your wife has to compete with them (consciously or subconsciously)

Think about this…

God created sexuality for many reasons.  It is a beautiful expression of love between a man and his wife. In the act of lovemaking, God ordained a way of creating a baby that could expand the natural progression of the love relationship.

Pornography is anything that distorts God’s original intention of sex.  First off, God’s plan is for sex to be  between a man and his wife.  It is meant to be beautiful, full of love and intamacy.  Anything else is called fornication.  It’s cheap and explicitly warned against in the bible.  Why? To make us frumpy, miserable? So we’re not cool?

No, just like any other command God gives – the command to only have sex after marriage is to protect us…from heartbreaks, from soul ties (that are formed when two people have sex), from disease, to protect the illegitimate child from hardship/shame, etc., and so that we might experience the fullness of marital love.  It is a beautiful gift.

The enemy would love you to believe that sex outside of marriage and porn, even soft porn, is cool – it’s okay.  “Friends” who are into porn or sex, usually try to coerce others into doing the same – as I’m sure yours are today.  In a way, it makes them feel better about what they are doing.  That’s part of the enemy’s plan.  Don’t you see?  When one of your friends is doing something ungodly – they usually try to get you to join in… And if you don’t – they don’t give up! They keep at you…. (btw – is that a friend?! Are you so afraid of being lonely that you call them your friends?)

Porn takes the beautiful body that God created and turns it into a sensual, self-satisfying, toy.  Read that sentence again…. Porn takes the beautiful body that God created and turns it into a sensual, self-satisfying, toy.  It cheapens the beauty of his creation.

Think about the original plan: God made something amazingly beautiful and sensual.  He blesses it, and us, to enjoy sex in marriage, and the beauty of the bodies he created, and then on top of that – creates a child in the process! How amazing!  Sex in marriage isn’t a self-seeking, self-satisfying act – instead it’s an amazing act of love.

Pornography doesn’t reflect any of that.  In fact, it distorts God’s generous plan.  It wants to distort it – because the enemy wants to mess with your present (and have you live in shame and sensual addictions), your future (your marriage and your bond with your wife), and your past (as you try to escape the images you’ve seen).  It is visions and images that chip away at you.

You’re an amazing young man.  With an amazing future.  Take control.  There is a God who can help you every step of the way.  He is the true friend.  When others lead you in a direction you don’t want to go – you are not alone. There is a friend who sticks closer than a brother – Jesus.

Let Him walk with you, keep you company – when you chose the high road and your “friends” mock you.  Call on Him and He will be there.

I’m here too!
With all my love,

Mom