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Praying for Your Sons

Focus on the Family / Jim Daly
The Truth Network Radio
July 6, 2020 2:00 am

Praying for Your Sons

Focus on the Family / Jim Daly

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July 6, 2020 2:00 am

Author and blogger Brooke McGlothlin discusses the need for parents to pray Scripture over their sons, and offers advice on raising boys to be men of integrity, character and respect.

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The Christian Car Guy
Robby Dilmore
Kerwin Baptist
Kerwin Baptist Church

I literally just fell on the floor of the kitchen. I said, Lord, I don't think I can do that and I said you know what I need help on. I need to know that I am not the only one employed full-time and raising two girls serenade felt overwhelmed truly think that God uses Focus on the Family in the guest to bring hope specially to young moms working mom or even a stay at home on on Jim Daly's working together we can encourage more moms like Sarah and help them grow in their relationship with the Lord, especially during this pandemic.

When you support Focus on the Family your strengthening marriages, equipping parents and sharing God's good news with those who need it most. Please donate today and when you do your gift will be doubled. Visit Focus on the families to learn more or call 800. The A in the word family. I knew in that moment. As God whispered to my heart the same as you and I are talking right now that God was speaking to me and he said to me he said from don't give up. These boys need someone to fight for them and I have chosen that person to be. That's Brooke McLaughlin ensuring about the tremendous significance God gives you as the mom of a boy.

She's our guest on today's Focus on the Family with Jim Daly. Thanks for listing. I'm John Fuller. If you're a parent of a boy you love today's program because we are going to talk about how to inspire young boys to become men of God. And I'll tell you what now more than ever. I got two teenage boys, now more than ever we need to be very intentional about raising those sons to the men of God. That's why were here Focus on the Family to put this kind of a resource in your hands to have this discussion so you could start talking about it as parents and what you can do to help your boys find the Lord and follow the Lord well you can learn how we can help you in that and are just as I said is Brooke McLaughlin and she and her husband live in Virginia with two sons and she's written a number of books including praying for boys asking God for the things they need most.

Brooke welcome for the first time to Focus on the Family thank you so much for having it's a pleasure to be okay now. Do we really need to pray for boys really like and I'm convinced that that it just the most overlooked part of Christian parenting yet. I think parents of boys know that one pretty well as I get up in the tree and you start praying. What monkey God help me, that you have a fun piece in your bio you were the cofounder of the mob society.

In today's world.

That may sound like a terrified but what is the mob society mob society mob stands for matters of boys we created at about 5 1/2 years ago to encourage and equip matters of ways to raise godly men when you look at culture today. We all kind of friend as parents and listen. We talk about being the parents of girls as well.

So if you're in that stage don't tune out because a lot of this will apply to both boys and girls but we do want to emphasize boys today.

Why are we as parents so concerned about what boys are facing today. I think part of that is because what we culturally what we have learned to expect from our children are what we have accepted as a cultural norm for boys has changed so much what you usually like and what is it like an example, I had to of what I call those boys know they are the ones who are 250% boy they ran me ragged their aggressive, impulsive lots of energy and they don't stop until they pass out now son moms would say all your boys are hard hard to handle their just boys and I disagree. They actually are. Really there's a subset of boys that are that are harder to handle than most and I happen to have two of them. If my boys had been born in the culture. I know years and years ago they would have been the ones that were responsible for the livelihood of the pack. The things that our culture sees today as deficiencies in boys back then were celebrated that energy that that impulsiveness that stubbornness that desire to set a goal and do whatever is required to get it done you know years ago. They've been the ones leading the pack, and now they're the ones that are our culture looks out and says we have to beat that out of the seven look at the big question though, and you're talking to. 911-year-olds like in your case, what are you helping them aim for what what you say to them. This is the kind of man I want to I love that because I do that all the time with them and I talked to them constantly about what a good man is what a real man is one of those attributes that you share with things that comes to mind is that a real man gets when he's done something wrong. A real man asks for forgiveness. When he does something to hurt someone else. We've groomed our children from the beginning to teach them that day that God made them to be protectors of women whether women want to be protected or not, that two God made you to be that we have taught them to just be considerate of other people to display humility and love other people more than they love themselves just as very honestly very biblical concepts of meeting what we all should be, but I think we've lost as it pertains to men specifically and as a woman.

I have to say you know I have a Masters degree. I was one of those that went on and got you know that graduate degree.

I'm so grateful for the freedoms I have as a woman now, but I think in our fight to give women lots of opportunities we somehow know her are permitted in some way.

It's all business. It's a zero-sum game. I'm not sure why but so what culture can embrace both genders and gender specific what it's almost like we want to eliminate the distinction, although MRIs you know those exams they could do our brains fire differently. God has wired us differently.

I think for very specific reasons. I want to get back to prayer though because it seems to be a core theme for you.

Why is prayer so important for kids for your kids. In general, but for boys, even specifically, I love to tell you why prayer is important for me and I think I'll answer your question. When my boys were very little. They were born just 23 months apart either one of them were planned. And as I've mentioned already there. Both of the hard to handle, kind, we thought our oldest son was hard to handle, and then his little brother came and just blew them right out of yes I'm sure that God was going to give me an easy baby after I first went, and that did not happen. I was one of those really weary moms who was desperate for God to do something in my home. I went to bed every night for the first several years of their lives feeling like I had not been the kind of mom I wanted to be that day. I think let me interrupt because I need to understand the picture what was happening.

That would give you the kind of fear or overwhelming sense I could not control my children so they would listen. They wouldn't listen. They wouldn't obey. They were loud and aggressive and all those things you know they would beat up on the little boy that came over to play with us and I think I felt a response in myself that really what it felt very out of character to who I was. If you asked the people that I grew up with the words unkind angry difficult those those words would not be have been the words that people use to describe me growing up, and yet my children seem to bring out the worst in me. Wow, so it was really your concern was there was reflecting upon you. Yes it was true. It really was bringing out the worst in me.

There were parts of me that came to the surface during that time that even know where they are.

I had never been pressed so hard and embarrassed and embarrassed so much by the behavior of two people whose behavior directly reflected upon me so you and your husband. How did you to talk about this worse the picture, he's dead. He is an amazing father and he was just as frustrated as I realize we struggled to get them to listen. It was almost like at times there was a blanket of veil over their eyes like they can even see or hear us.

They were so intent upon their own way.

Our boys are fighters and they have been from the beginning and over that period of time I life became one big fight and I was embarrassed by their behavior and I was embarrassed by the way it made me look as someone who really enjoyed betraying myself to my friends and family is no educated woman who was equipped and able to do whatever God brought my way. I was failing miserably as it came to myself what you think God was saying to you in that role. Again, you have those inadequacies.

You're feeling embarrassed both you and your husband don't have the answer. Kids are out of control what you think God was saying to you and that like relax or audit or, yes, now I don't think that with it. Maybe that was on parents feel that way.

I'm not doing it right when my doing wrong, you know, I think for me the Lord was stripping me he was distracting me. I didn't realize that I was a prideful woman and tell I became so embarrassed by my children's behavior and I still struggle with that sometimes.

Today I still feel like my children are too much of a reflection on me and I think probably most parents have that from time to time when your child does something stupid, you wonder, is my fault. It am I the reason for the wind as their free will come into play. Let me ask you this. As you begin to pray for your boys. What changes did you see words or something tangible that was happening of the biggest changes came in me. There have been changes that have happened in my voice for sure. As I've prayed the Lord has answered prayers for me.

The Lord has moved in their hearts. There are some big ones that he's answered for me and I'm so grateful for that. But I approached prayer when I first started praying.

The only reason I did it is because I didn't know what else to do. Desperation was desperate. I have no idea how to make a change in my home degree in counseling and I could not make a change in my home and it was set was just arresting it was the biggest failure. I think I had ever felt in my life that I could not make a change in my own home and so I went to the Lord in desperation and I say God, something has to change and I can't do it.

So begin to look at the word and I came across Ezekiel 3626 which says that it's the Lord that changes the heart of stone to a heart of flesh, I pondered that for some time and came to the conclusion that it was both a release and a frustration.

It was a frustration because I did not have the power to change my children's hearts and I wanted to disappointment yet. I wanted to be able to snap my fingers and see a change in them and I realized just straight from the word of God that I did not have that power. I do have a lot of power as a mom as parents we do have power in our homes and with our children, but that one thing the Lord had not given me and it was frustrating for me but at the same time. It was an incredible release for me and relief because I thought you know what I really messed up. And if I can't do this mothering thing. The way I want to God can still move in their hearts in spite of me and so it just changed my entire perspective that one verse gave me a picture of what partnering with God in parenting actually look like. And so I believed very very strongly that the word of God was true, and I believed that when God said that when that his word would not return void that it would do what he set forth for it.

To do that. It actually would. And so I thought you start praying for my children. Why would I pray anything other than the Scripture. If God is alive and active and uses his word to pierce our hearts. Why would I ever pray anything else. You're listening to Brooke McLaughlin today's Focus on the Family with Jim Daly I'm John Fuller and were talking about parenting were talking about some pretty common things of the goalless, hit the wall and said I can't do this. And Brooke is a great resource called praying for boys and that we got or call one 800 the letter a and the word family and if you can contribute to this not-for-profit ministry of Focus on the Family reaches around the globe touching lies in helping parents day in day out. Help us do that by making a generous donation today and will send a copy of the book to you is a way of saying thank you and Jim. The subtitle of the book is asking God for the things they need most, but so far what we've heard from Brooke as she was asking God for what she needed most effective and so Brooke, I appreciate your heart because you're speaking to all of us as parents we been there and it seems we come back there on occasion that frustration that desperation that you've talked about. I want you speak specifically to that mom or dad who is moving in that frustration mode too much for me when the kids are out of control. They're trying their best to get the situation under control, but it sounds like you were able to relax rather than get more intense. I think a lot of us parents we actually get more intense if it's not working rather than back up, take a deep breath and said okay Lord, I need your help and usually in that situation would license as the Lord does sick pray for them, but talk about that parent who is moving toward anger toward more intensity when really they should rethink my family as a home school family and so when my youngest son was five years old. We entered into a time where we were for the first time homeschooling both of our boys at the same time and I think as homeschoolers. There are misconceptions about what it's like is not peaches and cream homeschooling for me is very difficult is a huge challenge for me and I struggle every day with it, but this particular season when my youngest son was five years old, was one of the worst and by the time we reach November of his kindergarten year, he had become completely bored with his curriculum. I had underestimated how much he was learning just from listening to his older brother and so he Re: knew everything that I was trying to teach them and I was lost I was at the house to do this by the book. I have to teach them what it says right.

I just have to do it by the book and so I was moving on and forcing him to do things he already knew and by November. The mere mention of the word school caused him to fall on the floor in a kicking and screaming tantrums and that's how bad it was his older brother was getting no attention from me because I was having these physical outbursts from my younger child every day and so this one particular day I took we'd finish school. I fed the boys and I put them upstairs for their quiet time and I was broken I will never forget this day.

This day changed everything for me. I went downstairs to what I call my green prayer chair and I sat down body shaking weeping before the Lord and I said God I can't do this.

This is not what I signed up for. I wanted to teach my children because I wanted to love them and I wanted to be with them and I wanted to be the one that opened their mind and their hearts to all these things I wanted to teach them about you.

I wanted to disciple them and that is not what's happening. I quit I'm done I can't do this anymore and I was weeping and telling the Lord and you know I don't have too many times in my life where I can profess to hear the audible voice of God, but I knew in that moment. As God whispered to my heart the same as you and I are talking right now that God was speaking to me and he said this to me. He said Brooke don't give up. These boys need someone to fight for them and I have chosen that person to be you and it gives me till still today to think about that because I realized I was fighting against my children.

We were not on the same team and God told me know.

You fight for them in prayer is one of the ways that I can do that. It's one of the most amazing privileges but daunting tasks that the Lord gives us is to fight for could spiritually be what you're describing. There is spiritual warfare stepping in the gap in being there on the side of your children, just like the Lord is on our side.

You know we we have to realize that they need that kind of mentor you kind of person that should be us as moms and dads for the parent who hasn't consistently been praying for their sons how to get started. Give me a guideline and what's the best thing to do. It's really so simple.

I think sometimes our culture over spiritualize is prayer.

It isn't that hard. And what I found worked best for me was to make a list of some of the things that we were dealing with with our boys and this is something I do on a regular basis. I'll do it every so often over that list just like character traits they were struggling with areas in their character that I wanted the Lord to work can like maybe we needed to work on patients or maybe we needed to work on purity or anger or things like that.

I would become a student of your son. Look at what they're dealing with.

Know their hearts know what makes them tick and what their individual needs are and then just make a bullet point list of those things and then go to the word and find out how it speaks to those things. You may have to change your words a little bit because what I found is that sometimes people think will were dealing with this, but the Bible doesn't really speak to that actually dies, it just uses different words sometimes. So go and you know, if you look at your son and you say oh he's just so fussy all the time. When he's not content so look at verses that have to do with contentment. You know, if you say what he just yelled at me all the time find he's angry.

Look at verses that have anger involved in the great news is Brooke you packed all this into your book, praying for boys so we did a little bit of a cheat sheet. We go in there and see obedience in the Scriptures that you've already put there that you've used in practice. In your own home. Yes, that is so good.

Let me talk about obedience because that is one of the key things you've touched on it, but I think as moms and dads. That's part of the big fight in our house. How many times I told you to take that bag of trash out the door in the last 20 minutes is I think it's five times it's pretty much that way I can. I probably tend to say I am not sure are not a medical doctor. I think your hearing is okay so why would I have to tell you, for the fifth time to take the garbage out in the last half-hour but also something like that. That may be able to shaming. I don't know but that's how I'm trying to get connected to Martin boys to say, open your ears. How did you approach the obedience prayer and I think I misunderstood what obedience was in the beginning I had been taught that obedience met first time immediately you must do what I say sounds good to me. It's only convenient for us as parents we have course, we want that from our children right makes us look good when that happens, I'll think that's the way it is with us and God.

I think God wants us to obey and that the closer we are with him, the more mature we are in our faith. The more we are able to respond that way but we eliminate development when we're talking about our children was unreasonable back then, I wanted to in a four-year-old obey me instantly have the capacity to do that so I had to go back and renew and just retrain myself on God's heart toward obedience. How does God treat me when I'm not obedient what he expects from me and what developmental stage of my children and and what can I realistically expect from you Brooke. What's so good about what you're saying with people all of us need to catch what you said there about God wanting relationship with you. And through that relationship you become more obedient, so it's not obedience is not the first thing it's actually the love of God tells us toward that obedience that has such a perfect fit with parenting. Yes, you've got to have a relationship with your children. Were they lean into you.

They fall toward you, and you may have days where it's not working well, don't sever the relationship for obedience came relationship, and I think also that example of David. How can the Lord say that David had a heart for him.

David's kind of the man's man out of the Bible is wow. But he had a heart for God old didn't commit adultery and murder that does sound like a heart for God, but I think what you're saying there.

And that analogy is that David knew his weaknesses and he confessed his weaknesses and then he drove harder into his relationship with the Lord. That's what God wants. Yes, and we have to focus on that before I became a writer I worked at a local crisis pregnancy center for many many years and we taught parenting classes to the girls that were choosing life and carrying their babies and that kind of thing we had this dear older woman who came in and taught parenting class for us and I went to her class as the director of counseling.

I was brand-new and I just was sitting in on all the classes and I went to her parenting class before I even had children and I listen to her and she said something that I will never forget. She said keep the hearts of your children.

No matter, it forget about everything else on saying if you only take one thing from what I'm telling you today. Let it be this keep the hearts of your children and I think have a grandmother my my father's father abandoned my grandmother with three small boys. He was an alcoholic and chose alcohol over his family and somehow in a time when divorce was not looked at, the same way it is now is much tougher for her to raise three boys by herself in that time than it is now somehow she managed to raise three good men, and you lie it was because of the Lord. He was also because she had their hearts they could very easily have become statistics they should have. They should have become statistics and God prevented that into her dying day, she had their hearts so well, so that's probably the key thing that we talked about the and I so appreciated our conversation. It is highlighted, are parental desire to help you raise spiritually mature sons were able to live in this world and transform the culture through their faith and I'm so impressed with your book broken. I hope folks will pick it up because it is full. Chock-full of great import and great advice in your Focus on the Family. That's why were here everybody we want to put these kind of tools and resources into your hands so you can do a better job parenting and let me tell you I needed. We all needed and that we need to be able to acknowledge that we need that additional help, especially when someone's come on something so critical. Let me read your comment from a listener that we received not long ago that we've listen to your programs throughout our marriage of 38 years, and raising three children and now we get to experience the wisdom you pass on to be a godly grandparent.

Your programs have encouraged me when I was down lifted me when I was lost affirming when I needed that and gave me strength to fight the good fight and stand firm for our Lord Jesus Christ in all situations. Thank you for all you do and we want to pass their prayers right onto the Lord. But Brooke you are a first time just and you are in the greatest of the traditions of Focus on the Family.

Thanks for what you've done. Thanks for being with this and I hope that if you need parenting help you will call us today and her number is 800 K in the word family and you can also find us details about Brooks book and a CD or download this conversation.

There also a link for our mobile app so you can listen on the go, certainly have a number of listeners who are increasingly doing that more and more, and if you can join us in supporting the work of Focus on the Family to reach out and equip parents as we've done in the broadcast today.

Please make a generous donation of any amount, and that when you do will be sending a copy of the book, praying for boys is our thank you gift. Also, let me just remind you that right now there's a matching grant opportunity.

Your gift is going to have twice the impact when you donate today some generous friends will match your gifts dollar for dollar so that we double the impact you're making in this vital family ministry donate today and get your copy of praying for boys, when you call 800 K in the word family Brooke on the porch on the spot. I noticed no millions of people listening, but I think a good thing to do would be to close us in prayer by praying for one of those attributes could you do that, I would love to do that. Thank you.

Father, we just thank you so much for the way you always meet us in the mass you always are so faithful to come when we call lights.

I just pray for any any mom or dad it's listening right now that's struggling and hurting and weary that you would give them the freedom and the ability to call on you and so father we just also lift up these boys all across the world Lord and we pray in agreement with number six that you would bless them and keep them and make your face shine upon them. In Jesus name Amen amen Brooke McLaughlin author of praying for boys. Thank you so much for having me.

What a great conversation.

We hope you can join us next time for the broadcasters we hear one as powerful story of recovery from alcohol addiction.

We can find a problem and I think that we need to be careful for that because when we met our problems that actually God is able to work in our luscious or when we are weak to strong right thanks for listening today to Focus on the Family on behalf of Jim Daly and the entire team. I'm John Fuller inviting you back.

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