Ask Your Preacher

Ask Your Preacher

“The Heart Of A Child”

Categories: CHILDREN, FAMILY, RELATIONSHIPS
     Hello, I just really need some major advice if you could, please.  My family (mom, dad, sister, brother and I) is always fighting.  It's beginning to take a huge toll on all of us, and it's becoming all we do.  I don't want us to be that way, but I don't know what to do to stop it.  I pray that everyone will start being happier with everyone, that everyone will stop fighting and just get along and enjoy our time together.  My parents fight a lot, and I'm just worried that it's going to tear this family apart.  Do you know anything I can do or say to stop this?

I feel like I'm about to have a mental breakdown.  I really do.  Everything is just getting to me, and I have no friends at all (I know God and Jesus Christ love me, but I mean, like, people around me).  Everyone just thinks of me as a loser or something.  I want to be needed and to be someone's best friend.  I know this all probably sounds crazy or just a rant, but I just needed to talk to someone that would personally read and answer me.  I'm trying to make friends.  I'm just afraid that I'm supposed to be alone and friendless all my life.  Please help any way possible; a prayer for my family and I would be greatly appreciated!  Thank you for taking the time to read this, and again, I'm sorry.  God bless.

Sincerely,
Hurting

Dear Hurting,

First of all, you are in our prayers.  Fighting within a family is so painful for a child; at least one of our AYP writers knows that first hand.  Perhaps the most painful part is the feeling of helplessness that the children are left with.  There isn’t anything you can say to fix it, and that is what hurts.  We wish we could tell you that there is an easy solution, and if you step in and get involved, it will change everything, but that isn’t true.  Sometimes, getting involved can make things worse.  Pr 26:17 says that getting in the middle of someone else’s disagreement is like grabbing a dog’s ears.  You’ll get bitten every time.  Just because you feel you have the solution and see the situation clearer than your parents doesn’t mean that they would be receptive to hearing it.  The most likely scenario is that you would add fuel to an already burning fire.

Another thing to consider is that your advice isn’t likely to be accepted by either parent because you are their child.  Jesus said that a prophet has respect except amongst his own family and in his own house (Mk 6:4).  Time has not made you equals with your parents, and you aren’t in a position to help them – it just isn’t the way life works.  This doesn’t mean you are wrong or that you are seeing things incorrectly – it just means they won’t listen because you are the child, and they are the parents.  Whether or not you are correct is irrelevant.

But all of this doesn’t mean there isn’t anything you can do.  Jesus’ preaching didn’t affect His family, but His lifestyle did.  Multiple times in the Bible it says that Mary saw Jesus’ behavior and “treasured these things in her heart” (Lk 2:19, Lk 2:51).  Jesus’ example made a lasting impact upon His family.  When you see your parents fighting, calmly walk away.  If they ask why – tell them it hurts you.  When you have a chance to show respect to your father and love to your mother, do it.  As parents, we can tell you that mothers and fathers notice these acts of selflessness and maturity in our children more than they ever know.  Many parents have become better people because of the example of their children.  You can’t preach to them, but you can live a sermon every day.  And most of all, remember that regardless of what your parent’s marriage looks like, it isn’t your fault, and it isn’t your burden.  You are only responsible for you, and someday, if you get married, you can apply the lessons you are learning now to change your family tree, so your children don’t need to feel the way you are feeling now.