Daily Devotional – 11/28/11 “Kids, I swear!”

I can remember doing something as a child that I knew I was not supposed to do and then momma would say, “You remember this when you have children.”  Of course as children, you never think about the smart remarks under your breath, coming home late, getting in trouble at school or sometimes talking back, until you actually have children and they start acting like strangers in your house.  You sit back and think about the times you did this or that and ask if the treatment you get now is payback for all the things you did.  You know all the times you skipped school to go met Mr. No Good, when you knew that when momma found out she would spell his name across your backside or the papers you accidentally threw away that had the big F in red across the top that was supposed to be signed and returned.  Do you think about all the things you did then and wonder if now you’re getting back what you put out?  It wasn’t funny then but now that you think about it, it makes you thank God for keeping your crazy behind safe.

I sometimes sit and wonder what makes children try some of the things they do.  They will tell a lie so quick when the truth would surely do.  You ask them if they have homework and they say no before you get the full question out.  You ask them how things are going at school and they’ve made the lie so good that you think they are an angel at school when the teacher hates to see them coming.  We, as parents, have become so busy that we don’t take the time to parent anymore.  We don’t check their backpacks anymore and most kids don’t even carry one and hardly brings books home, but we think they are passing.  But, oh, let the interim come home with the D’s and F’s and we act all shock.  But honey, I’m sure you know your son or daughter by now to know that in order to pass they need to study and if there are no books coming home, it’s most likely none are being opened at school.  I’ve found that the world and its technology has become a hindrance to our kids.  They use so much slang when talking and texting and then we wonder why they fail English and Reading.  We’ve allowed them to talk any way around the house and then wonder why the teacher can’t understand them when they ask a question. 

When my sisters and I were in school, we came home and did our homework at the dining room table.  Momma was a stickler for good handwriting and using wrinkle free, clean notebook paper.  If we had too many eraser marks on our paper, we had to do it over, no questions asked.  But after a while (and many do overs), we knew what momma expected and she no longer had to say it.  We knew that if we bought a bad grade in the house, you got in trouble for it.  Then, we had to answer to granddaddy and he didn’t take excuses.  But now, we go on the kid’s word.  We don’t drop in at the schools, we don’t look in their backpacks/purses, we don’t email the teachers or even use the things that we’ve been given to stay on top of our kids.  We gotten so lazy that we allow them to skate by on education and then once they hit the real world, they can’t make it.  The world is a hard place and it isn’t easy at all to find a decent job that can become a career.  The job place has become so hard, that more people are working beyond retirement years because they can’t afford to retire.  People used to say that it was easy to get a job at a fast food restaurant but it’s not anymore.  Even these places are looking for high school diplomas now. 

We’ve got to get back to caring as parents.  When kids act up and get bad grades, whoop their butts, punish them and take away some of that expensive stuff you’ve bought by going in debt. Get them a library card and make them read more.  Give their tail a bed time and take away the cell phones and computers at that time.  Give them something constructive to do on the weekends instead of hanging out with friends and spending your money.  Stop running to the school showing your tail when you know your child is the class clown.  If you got a problem with the teacher, then handle it with the teacher but don’t put the child in grown folk business.  (Let me throw this in for free, if you co-parent with the mother or father outside of your household, discuss grown folk business out of the presence of the child(ren).)  STOP PUTTING KIDS IN GROWN FOLK BUSINESS.  Whatever issue you got, deal with it like an adult.  Stop with all the cursing, the neck rolling and attitude.  You know good & well your child probably did exactly what the teacher said he or she did but instead you listen when they say “She just don’t like me.”  Yea, she probably doesn’t like them but it doesn’t mean she won’t teach them.  It’s like when you say “I can’t stand you sometimes,” to your child but it doesn’t mean you don’t love them.

I always say that I won’t ever say what my child won’t do out of my presence.  I know that I did things when I wasn’t in the presence of my mom just like you know your child.  So, please stop with all the dramatics when you see her cursing on Facebook or posting inappropriate pictures.  There is nothing wrong with having an open relationship with your son and daughter that allows them a door to talk to you, but it doesn’t mean you stop being a parent and start being a best friend.  You are the parent and that means that you have to parent.  If your son wears a size 30 in pants but you buy him a 34, they will sag.  If your daughter wears a size 13 and you buy a 10, they will be tight.  If you tell her you don’t care what she does, then she won’t care.  If you don’t tell him the safety in wearing a condom while having sex, it’s safe to assume he won’t use them.  If you don’t tell her the proper way for a young man to treat her, she will probably fall for the first one that whispers in her ear or buy her a $5 combo from McDonald’s.  The bible says in Proverbs 22:6 “Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it.” If they do happen to stray, they usually come back because of the training they’ve received.  When you’ve raised a dog from a puppy they know your training and sometimes, like they sometimes do, they run off, stay gone for a few hours or days but they return home.  It’s the same way with children, your job is to train them so that they know right from wrong and when they make a bad choice they learn from it. 

It is getting harder and harder to raise children.  Whether you are a single parent or in a 2 parent household, it’s hard.  That’s why we have to help one another.  If you see my child doing something that you know is wrong, say something and then tell me.  We have to stop putting on blinders when it comes to kids now.  They are growing up faster and the world is changing every day.  Check their backpacks, purses, cell phones, Facebook/MySpace accounts, open the doors in your house to see what they are doing and be careful of the company they keep.  Sit down and talk to their friends and their friend’s parents.  Don’t be quick to drop them off at so & so’s house or allow them to go to everybody’s party.  You are responsible for your child.  If you don’t feel comfortable with the person she is riding with, then say something.  If you don’t feel comfortable with the person whose house he or she is staying over, say something.  Again, you are responsible for your child (ren).  Don’t believe me, read Psalm 127:3 which states, “Children are a gift from the LORD; they are a reward from him.” Cherish the gifts you’ve been given because once they are gone, you can’t get them back.

Published by Pastor LaKisha

LaKisha Johnson is an author of thirty Christian Fiction novels, devotionals and journals. She writes from her heart, as she hopes the messages, on the pages, will relate to every reader.  Ask her and she’ll tell you, ”It’s not just writing, its ministry.” Over the course of her career, she’s won the 2018 Drunken Druid Book of the Year Award for her book, The Forgotten Wife, 2019 Top Shelf Christian Fiction Book of the Year for Dear God: Hear my Prayer, 2020 Distinguished Authors Guild Award for her book, I’m Not Crazy and was a 2020 TopShelf Women’s Fiction Finalist for her book, When the Vows Break. In addition to being a self-published author, she’s also a wife of 22 years, mother of 2, Asst. Pastor of Macedonia MB Church in Hollywood, MS; Sr. Business Analyst with FedEx, Devotional Blogger and more. She’s a college graduate with 2 Associate Degrees in IT and a Bachelor of Science in Bible.   LaKisha writes from the heart, and this is why she doesn’t take the credit for what God does. If you were to strip away everything, you’d see that Lakisha is simply a woman who boldly, unapologetically and gladly loves and works for God.

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