“I pray because I can't help myself. I pray because I'm helpless. I pray because the need flows out of me all the time- waking and sleeping. It doesn't change God- it changes me.”
― C. S. Lewis
― C. S. Lewis
I believe in the sun even when it's not shining. I believe in love even when I don't feel it. And I believe in God even when He is silent. (quote found on the wall of a concentration camp)
Monday, August 23, 2010
"Be The Flashlight"
I was thinking over a few things related to a Heather Forbes- Bryan Post- Eric Guy- BCLC- conversation.
Some of the discussion was that, "They are off".
I think sometimes, what we are afraid of, we attack. So, here is yet another post, to bring out some of the benefits that I think one could get in a BCLC approach to parenting, and a few observations of my own.
No one approach is perfect, unless of course it perfectly lines up with the Word of God.
It is our personal responsibility as parents to ANY child, to be the parent God has called us to be, not just the easy one, but the troubled and difficult one too.
Scripture calls for us to Love. It calls for parents, to not exasperate or embitter their children. I know there are times where I have done the very thing scripture tells me not to do. It is wrong, and as a Christian, I see it as sin.
I am thankful to the wonderful wisdom I have been able to glean from, both from the pulpit, from books, from scripture, and from parents who have walked before me.
There is a rich treasury, a wealth of knowledge to be had and understood.
If I want to know about raising girls in particular, I might find my good friend who has raised girls and has a close reltaionship with her girls, to pick her brain and see what she did right. For boys, the same thing.
When it comes to the traumatized or adopted child, I might pick a different brain, because the circumstances and situations are very, and VASTLY different.
The toddler who screams NO! in rebellion, may look exactly like the toddler who screams NO! in fear, but how you parent the fearful toddler, vs. the rebel of a toddler is vastly different.... YET, many things can be the same.
(how's that for a wishy washy statement) LOL
BCLC is not about changing your child so they can fit into your family. It is about changing YOU so you can reach your child.
Really, as I was reading Colossians 3:18- yesterday, there is a part of chapter 3 that says, "Wives, submit to your husbands as is fitting in the Lord, Husbands love your wives and treat them gently, do not provoke your children to exasperation lest they become discouraged, children obey your parents as it pleases the Lord...... What ever you do, work heartily for the Lord and not for men!
It was interesting to me that each relationship mentioned was to be pleasing to the Lord.
In not exasperating my children, treating them gently, I do please the Lord. In Proverbs there is the famous vs. that says, "A soft answer turns away wrath". It is so true. Why is it so hard for us to put away ourselves and follow it.
One of the things that the BCLC paradigm presents is using a soft answer to DE-Escalate situations with traumatized children.
It is curious, how some will get upset because they want the RIGHT to not be gentle and tender, when their child isn't gentle and tender. It is more of an "eye for an eye" kind of parenting. Only the strongest and fittest survive that kind of house hold... or do they?
Tenderness and Discipline are not mutually exclusive statements.
One of my favorite parts of the BCLC approach is that Love Never Fails. It doesn't.
I was listening to a Margaret Becker song this a.m. called "Never for Nothing".
It isn't for naught when you love somebody and receive nothing back.
Eventually, that nut will crack, that hard shell will crack, that heart of stone will turn into a heart of flesh, but it takes TIME.....
And if you never saw it in your lifetime, that doesn't mean it was for naught.
When our children who come from such awful backgrounds are brought into our homes, their hearts are closed to such a bright light. That light of love, reflecting on them closes their eyes and hearts. It is too bright! And they can't see their way out of a very dark place.
If we would stop shining the light IN their face, and BECOME the light and shine the light in the direction out of the darkness and into the light, they may be able to open their eyes and follow us. They may even hold our little flashlight hand along the way. :)
They may need to take baby steps,allowing their eyes to adjust slowly, or they may run, to a new reality of love, compassion, acceptance and relationship. But it is up to us to adjust for THEM, not them for US.
Model that light to them. Don't shine it in their face. Walk in the path and direction you want them to walk, and point the light at the goal! Let them peer at what is to come.... and comfort them in their fear.
As they begin to see, that little window of tolerance that is mentioned so much in BCLC will begin to open, and then it will open WIDE! And then, you can be all the more tender and loving and gentle with the special gifts that God has given you.
So would you rather be this?