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Shelby Abbott: It’s All About the Process

Family Life Today / Dave & Ann Wilson, Bob Lepine
The Truth Network Radio
June 20, 2022 10:00 pm

Shelby Abbott: It’s All About the Process

Family Life Today / Dave & Ann Wilson, Bob Lepine

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June 20, 2022 10:00 pm

Real Life Loading podcast host Shelby Abbott knows his podcast isn't the only work in progress. His life story reminds him Jesus is all about the process.

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Shelby Abbott's devotional -- It's a motivational tool-inspiring believers to share their faith.

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Students will come up to me afterward or someone will approach me is that I'm so thankful you talked about this, because that's my story to and that's when the real work happens because people feel like I'm not alone here. I'm not the only person who's messed up in this way, if the speaker or the guy behind the microphone or the author can go to these things and still be in process.

What is that say about me.

That's comforting welcome to family life today where we want to help you pursue relationships that matter most and will and Dave Wilson. You can find his way we live today.com for honor his family life today so one of the things that was interested in raising her three sons was there perspective on if you're going to reach our generation with the gospel of Christ, you're going to have to do it differently than you did with your generation. Yet when you think that means I'm asking you is when they first said that I read. I can remember sitting at a lunch with one of my sons and he just basically said you know dad I don't think I bring my friends to your church.

I know what you mean by that. It goes well. Just it's it's not gonna reach a 20-year-old 25-year-old it was not speaking the language of their generator. I really give you credit because you did not get defensive. He did not say you don't know you're talking about. He said tell me more when he mean by that I mean now is a huge kiss.

He founded our church and for him to say I wouldn't come and I wouldn't bring my friend that was all below. Why doing a new is being honest and I knew I didn't know what I did know know and so I remember look at names and tell me more that I think every 4056-year-old parent should be open to the fact that our kids because it's a different generation forgot try and reach him it's gonna look it's gonna be the same wine in a different wineskin and so we need to learn. So today is next-generation 101 we got Shelby Abbott back in the studio with this welcome back to family life today. Thank you for having me help in were excited to have you here. Not only are you the voice now year now.

Replacing Bob Lapine on the backend, which no one can replace by vein, that's true.

I agree that you had a ministry with young adults with crew for how many years I was in the campus ministry for 20 years and it's always been my target audience. In fact, I'm still even on seven family life. I'm still running a summer mission with college students, so I feel like I'm rubbing shoulders with them on a pretty consistent basis. So what Dave was talking about with our sons. You know that heartbeat do yeah and I think the the heart of older people when they look at younger people is to say what I learned us and he'll not know you have toward the back is to say it will.

This is what works and will continue to do it because it works. And now with generationally things shift to just naturally with the on, of the Internet age and social media that has rapidly shifted the way that young people, process, not only information, how they process themselves how they view God how they view others, and the pace is so quick now that I found that an older generation has a tendency to just feel kind of dizzy by looking at how are we going to do this and there's solutions they get thrown out there that are good and we always need an older generation to look toward for wisdom and to listen to and to learn from but the strategy does have to be different. So what's real life loading that's a baby or pot.

Yes, that's trying to reach 18-28. Real life loading Right ever plugged in. Something like even in your car and it says loading Or you get the three dots on your phone when you text someone you know that something is about to happen. It basically infers. This is life in process and so we don't want to say we have it all together.

We have your answers come to me and I will give you the answers that you need. It's like no I'm I want to be a trusted friend who comes alongside you, maybe throws my arm around your shoulder and say let's do this together.

I'm a little bit ahead of you in life and so I can be that trusted older brother, so to speak, or older trusted friend, but I'm also still very much in process and the tagline of the show. It's real life loading somewhat anxious, always authentic, and for example with anxiety. We hear a lot of times you shouldn't be anxious. Anxiety is a sin and Matthew six points that out to us.

Yes, but it's more nuance than that. Sometimes, too, if anything, the Bible gives us permission to wrestle with those things is not always about these and destinations of where we need to get to. It's about that process and Jesus cares just as much about the process as he does those and destinations.

So what can it look like for a young person to be with me. Be with us in this process of not having it all together. Yesterday I learned that you shared your own story about your dad.

He said that you are in process of forgiving him for some of the things that happen in your own life with abandonment as your parents were divorced and I loved about that. He didn't wrap up 01 and I think sometimes when I was younger I used to go to church.

I thought, why does every story have to be like I used to do this but then everything is perfect and I'm perfect now has anything to share about it when you're in the midst of the pain is funny. The use of the two because we were talking about that yesterday, I felt this twinge of embarrassment that I hadn't come to the point that you are at data with your father.

I thought this like little tiny thing in me that said but I'm doing better now and I'm I'm writing the letter I did. I do want to put the bone. I haven't written a letter I haven't made the call. My father yet and I'm very much in process when it comes to anxiety and with even struggle with dark feelings of loneliness and depression. I don't do social media right all the time. I don't and to say that I do gives people a standard that they feel like they need to shoot for. And that's when I'll arrive and if they do get to that point to realize this is not the solution.

Yeah, this is not the solution is having it all together is not the solution.

The solution is Jesus and allowing him to work on us in that process so great is that God is using you right now you don't have it all figured out for That God still use SS in yet.

I have like a lot of ugliness in my past, not only with like my family and I can stuff and in divorce, and wrestling through a lot of that.

But, like personal ugliness as well.

I think one of the most dangerous places someone can be spiritually is thinking that they can buy their own salvation through their good works or religious behavior that was me for a very long time, and even through my 20s and early 30s wrestling with. Oh, I don't need God's grace. I'm doing pretty good. I'm a full-time missionary that's a really ugly dangerous place to be. That's part of my story. In addition to that, like I've got sexual abuse in my history that's ugly and disgusting. I want to talk about that very much.

I've got opioid addiction, not a long time ago. Just a few years ago I had that in my life that's embarrassing to me. I don't like to talk about those things but I found that the more that I'm willing to engage with those conversations, the more areas that where I talk about the broken parts of my life those of the areas where I find that students will come up to me afterward or someone will approach me is that I'm so thankful you talked about this, because that's my story to and that's when the real work happens because people feel like I'm not alone here. I'm not the only person who's messed up in this way, if the speaker or the guy behind the microphone or the author can go to these things and still be in process. What does that say about me. That's comforting.

Talk about a little bit because the church is typically we mentioned yesterday, a place where there was all hidden. There is darkness, brokenness, ugliness, as you said wasn't talked about so you're saying you talked about that help us understand how we talk about it because you don't want to just live in the darkness and ugliness right you need to be on elevator you like. Let me tell you about appropriately talk about you.

You mention sexual abuse you mention opioid addiction wow them right away as I well will know what he says is good things in churches some sinner outside the church struggles with that but somebody knows Christ doesn't struggle with that stuff you struggled with that. How do you appropriately talk about that in a way that is appealing to anyone, including the next generation yeah I think coming to a place of being honest about who we are. I am a sinner in need of God's grace, I will always be a sinner on the side of eternity in need of God's grace, I will never friend of mine says there are no such thing as grace graduates and it's true. I've never I've never been in a position where I will not need God's grace. So Jesus is the friend of sinners. When Jesus walked into the city. He could've met with all the religious leaders, but he chose Zaki us this awful sinning tax collector who swindled people out of money and he changed his life and he picked him. Why, because it was about Jesus and not about him and so to say oh we don't talk about those kind of things here. Number one, you should because the more you sweep stuff under the rug is just going to come out again. I discovered that was students who have been forced to say I'm not allowed to ask questions about my faith. Well, that will come out again.

I see people walk away from the faith, because they stuffed it or were told to stuff it for a long time. So to think that oh if we just like to ignore it'll go away. This never truly will not go away. We need to deal with these kind of things but to call myself well that's the stuff that we talk about with outside the church is not stuff we deal with in here is just a nave picture of reality because everybody is going through difficult things all the time in the more real we are with them to admit the struggle we can then begin to get on the solutions and do me the word begin, because once we admit that there is a problem then were able to bring community around us and deal with those things in a healthy way. In the context of being in the body of Christ and then get on the solution side of things, so I'm not saying admit it, and let's just wallow in our misery all the time know allow the Holy Spirit to break us of those things and then we can be able to get on the solution side of things, which is allowing the Holy Spirit to work in and through our lives to sanctify those dark areas of our hearts that we have refused to allow people in before I am guessing a lot of listeners have kids between the age of 18 and 28 talk to them like, what if they need to know as parents should we be confessing some of the stuff were struggling and how can we win that age there are good? You remember our youngest us another dinner table.

The other two boys were off to college so was like oh we only have one son here and member he starts going hey mom that can you tell me about like your sexual history and committed future life know you are you sure you answer this question honestly. I recovered all apparent answer the question because there's gonna be questions later, and I think to answer in a uniform blanket way would be a mistake on my part, I think there's a intentional level of discernment that you need to have as an adult when you're dealing with your kids specifically. So some things may not be ever appropriate to talk about with your kids.

But at the same time approaching things with the level of humility.

I think parents are constantly in a position of always feeling like I'm the one that needs to correct my kids and shepherd them and guide them so I am taking the moral high ground, whether or not actually have the moral high ground in these areas and that trains us into thinking that I will always be that for my kids but you know your kids the best you know them when they get to a certain age. If there able to handle these kind of things.

Or if you're even willing to break the ice with them in certain ways and see what God does. There I'd say number one what you need to do is approach a prayer for Lee prayer is one of those things that we often neglect and underestimate and just ask the Lord hey I want to talk to my daughter or my son about this kind of stuff because I think it will be helpful for them to talk about my shortcomings. For example, but I don't want to look at it is kind of like look at all the areas in the past where I failed so that you cannot do those things that might work for one kid, but for another kid. It's like I never want to talk to you again mom. Please don't ever mention anything like this.

So you need to thread that needle and figure out what would be best for your kid because you know what your kid would respond to the best. That being said, being willing to take steps of vulnerability on your part and admit that you don't have it all together. One of the best things I think a parent can do for their kids to say I'm sorry I was wrong. Will you forgive me and while they may or may not take you up on that initially continually owning your areas of shortcomings so that we, in reality, convince your kids that you don't believe you have it all together and when you get to that point of authenticity of reality. They'll be willing to talk to you about more things and maybe perhaps talk about their own struggles with that kind of stuff because they're going to somebody with it. It's usually their friends. Maybe their siblings, maybe even people out there on the Internet, but they have to talk about that kind of stuff their bottling it. Yes, quite a bit, but they are talking about it.

Would you rather than go to their friends who may or may not know Jesus.

Would you rather than them come to you and so what do you need to work on personally as apparent so that you can free up those roads for them to travel down and come to may take some time, but live with authenticity live as if you actually believed what the Bible says is true, pretty pretty simple.

Pretty simple, but very difficult. Here's a question for you personally. How old are your kids.

My kids are my two daughters there 10 and eight so were there a little older, maybe 13, 15, 17, and they ask you about the things you just mentioned is ugliness in your life, your eviction or you this is Shelby Abbott and you're listening to my conversation with Dave and Ann Wilson will get back to that in just a minute, but first I want to jump in here and say that I joined family life team because I believe in the mission biblical truth apply to today's family is arguably more important now than ever. So if you feel the same way that I do you consider supporting family life today with a donation when you give any amount this week. We want to send you a copy of my book called what's the point asking the right sessions about living together in marriage is our way of saying thank you to you when you give any time this week. You can do that online@familylifetoday.com or you can give us a call with your donation at 800-358-6329 can be a one-time gift or a recurring monthly gift. Again the number is 800 F peasant family L as in life, and then the word today. Right now, back to my conversation with David and Ann Howell talk to my kids when they're older about the ugly parts of my life, including opioid addiction, opioid use came to mean not like I was walking the streets looking for pills. It came through an injury that I had in my back and then a long period of time of using opiates to manage pain and then having to wean off that medication in the process of withdrawal going okay.

I'm not going to do this but I get it why people choose heroin over withdrawal, I get I got I think that's one of the things that I think would be helpful in letting my kids understand that I'm not perfect and I don't have it all together and I screwed up a lot while you were here, not like a long time ago before you around like while I was raising you kind of a deal, so I will speak frankly about this kind of things the ugly areas, but I will also speak about the areas that I'm super excited about. Namely, I was a virgin when I got married. I'm not ashamed of that.

I'm not afraid of someone calling me prudish or oh yeah nobody could do that might want to give glory to Jesus for that. So the good things and the bad things and say I am not a person that has arrived. I will never arrived. Neither will you. And when you fail, I will extend you grace in the way the guys extended me grace because I want to be here with you because I'm for you that I am part of me thinks our kids long for this. The next generation that your passionate about.

I think everyone longs for telephone right or wrong, I'm asking both Shelby and my wife and I'm hoping when people listen. The family of today. This is what happens. This is one of my hopes they listen and they go out. This couple is just like us.

They struggle with the same things we struggle and some of the stuff that was ever talk about but they're like bring it into the light, but at the same time they got a victory. They got all hope in Jesus.

That's just as strong as the struggle and just as real, sure, I know that victory like they do. I want to keep, listen, I'm hoping that every sermon every program. We do, I'm sure there's more than that, but at least that's happening, in part, me thinks that's what our kids long for. That's with the next generation as long for. Can I be around a person that's real about the struggle not heighten it, but at the same time has hope and victory it even a power supernaturally in Christ that meets them right in the victory that I am. I'm drawn to. Is that what yes generation advice long for the they want things to be real. They don't want something to be plastic and fake. They want honesty they want authenticity and the struggle that you're talking about the people have with bringing things into the light, that struggle is real and I think all of us know that struggle is real is not something to be like you just drag it into the light come alongside them in that process because they need a trusted friend to help take them there, but also remind them that when you bring things into the light. That's where darkness dies and that's where Jesus wants us to be and not that we have to be perfect is not that but discovering that in the light though might seem scary and it might seem painful, and we might squint her eyes really hard when get there.

It's where the darkness dies and I wouldn't know of any young person who would say that I want to keep the darkness in my life that we would never admit that yet we live like that all the time so it's really about Putman legs to it and helping them in that process and that's what I want to do with this podcast I would add to as we bring things into the like.

Don't forget that there's a spiritual battle going on that will try with all the enemy has keep it in the dark. The first time I decided at our church kinda talked about my piece on the state in front of thousands of people and then my heart was just beating sure because you risk rejection and to share that and I'll never forget that. I got a note.

Soon after, and as soon as I shared all of that committee do this because I know other people are locked up.

I know there in shame. I know they've never told anybody.

And so I was doing it in hopes of bringing other people into that light of having the courage to expose it.

And right after I was done I got a note from a woman and she said I want you to know that today is you shared your story you glorified Satan. I am telling you it knocked me down is the opposite of everything opposite and there's nothing she could have said that what is devastated me more because I'm hoping to bring glory to God because I shared like but God has restored and is restoring them in the nits of him steering me and yet she thought because I shared it. Somehow I glorified highlighted it yet and so I went into hiding. I thought I'm never doing that again. I will never share and expose anything like that again because if it's glorifying Satan that's my greatest fear that I would do that. Even now I had other people think. He never told anybody to say to anybody listening into your kids. We're living in darkness that's suffocating when we've never shared it in the enemy will do anything in his power to get you to hide but man when we expose it because other people went up to me and I have since shared many times. Jesus wants to set us free, and when you bring it into the light and that's what I'm so excited about your podcast Juergen expose things that young adults are dealing with a lot of people talk about how you needed a place to go to to hear and talk to St. that's me, that's me. The first year researchers are set on the stage. One night at a midweek service and I was scared to death to save the solo but I did and no one at that time was ever talk about this but I just thought I can't keep this in the dark so I sure my porn struggle and my copastor cofounder came up to me afterwards he goes dude you just change this church I go to me as a bad dog light my fire just outside right now you can get fired, yelled at the just admitting you had a struggle. He goes no I think we just created a community of honesty and no secrecy, and few see in the dark. Dark winds if you bring in the light. There's a community and Christ who can help you that is what I think of when I look at you, Shelby, and think when you're launching a podcast for the next generation. The say were going to create a space where will be honest and real and you can be as well will talk about the issues you're dealing with because the gospel is just as great for your parents as it is for you. Way to go.

Thank you and that I do believe that is the heart behind is the gospel changes everything about our lives.

It really does not just as like a pithy little one-liner. It actually does. It changes our lives and we don't have to be a certain age have to achieve a certain amount of status or whatever the gospel changes our lives right here right now in the midst of our mess because everybody's mess. I'm shall be evident in you been listening to my conversation with David and Wilson on family life to if you know anyone who needs to hear today's conversation. Be sure to share it from wherever you get your podcasts and why you're there and really help us out if you rate and review us. You know it's easy as parents to want to just tell our kids what to do and how to fix everything, but sometimes what they need most is for us to just be in their world and to truly know them, you know, that whole quick to listen, slow to speak, think, we'll talk more about that tomorrow. In my conversation with David and continues on behalf of David and Wilson. I'm shall be added you back next time for another edition of family life, family life today is a production of family life through ministry helping you pursue the relationships that matter most


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