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January 14, 2021 5:00 am
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Good parents aren't perfect and that's okay but there are ways you can grow every day. Focus on the Family seven traits of effective parenting assessment gives parents an honest look at their unique strings plus some areas that could use a little help every mom and dad can help raise the next generation of healthy children and responsible children in this assessment will help get you started. Take the assessment of focusonthefamily.com/7 traits that's focusonthefamily.com/7 trade. I wonder if you've ever wished you could change something about yourself. Maybe your height, hair color or skill set is probably something all of us struggle with at some point in time Dr. Kathy Cook will share a really unique perspective on how you can shake your God-given attributes on this episode of Focus on the Family in your house to spoke as president and author Jim Daly John were celebrating the sanctity of human life throughout the month of January and today were highlighting the fact that our creator God has a purpose for every life that Dr. Kathy opened her message quoting Genesis chapter 1 which says God created man in his own image. She pointed out that that God is a personal intentional creator and he doesn't use an assembly line to build his human beings that he deliberately chooses each attribute that he gives us and that idea it should blow our mileage right. Yeah, let's go ahead now and I hear from Dr. Kathy Cook as she spoke to our staff just about a year ago on today's episode of Focus on the Family. We read in the book of Isaiah that Isaiah understood God's personnel intentionality in Isaiah chapter 64 verse eight we read old Lord you are our father.
We are all the clay you are Potter, we are all the work of your hand to sit with all everyone you'll ever meet, and every one you'll never meet created by God's hand. He wanted them any one of them made the way that they are. I picture God the Creator at the potter's wheel and there's this lump of clay. I think I'll give them a girl this time I feel give her very long finger so she can play the piano really well I, I think I'll make her very analytic micro data driver mom. That's I don't know but I know you was strategic in intentional and planned. We all have worth because we were wanted created on purpose with purpose for purpose, he decided, and we are here we were wanted. We are wanted. We are here God created every person conceived.
He is never surprised for God. There is no such thing as an unplanned pregnancy. We may be surprised. And I understand that but to God.
All plan I'm pro-life and pro-eternal life. I pro-abundant life.
And I pro-living, you know, people barely alive not living you don't to me about out there going to the motions there breathing there taking up space, but they've chosen to step back and disengage. How tragic. I want us to live intentionally want to live intentionally because God created us intentionally on purpose.
Why were you created for such a time as this so exciting to think about.
And the dream I have for kids is that they would live long enough to find out you don't know everything is when your child your child childhood comes before adulthood, and it might make sense. One day, no matter what our specific purposes are.
I do know that we were created to leave the world a better place to be pulled.
Living in the livelong and leave the world a better place through who we are and through what we doing to choose life to model that in our actions and our beliefs who are you becoming I don't know what your stories are but I was created to be a chatty Kathy. I was given that nickname when I was about three years old by my mom's mom.
Oh, you're such a chatty Kathy, my parents chose to see all the words of me as a strength to develop not a problem to eliminate and that's the power the parent praise God for my peers. They were imperfect, but they saw something in me that needed to come out all these words in me. My brother Dave is also extremely grateful for our parents. My brother is a clinical chemist at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. He is the past president of the American Association of clinical chemist. My brother credits the beginning of the passion he has for chemistry to a chemistry set our grandparents gave him at his 10th birthday. We believe that our grandparents must've seen something in my brother that caused him to believe that there was something in him that would be brought forth through investigation and experimentation in making messes at the kitchen table which are parents allowed him to do and as a result of that. My brother now is changing lives through the discovery and clinical chemistry back to my chatty Kathy straight with the got use for me when I was about 10 years old. Mom and dad enrolled me in children's data.
This a go talk there while true story. I when the library reading awards every summer of my junior high years reading more books than any other kid, I joined the forensics team in high school and gave speeches and earn ribbons doing so and what my doing today.
We are who we are supposed to be our childhood matters as we age. On purpose, for purpose with purpose, to the glory of God, and I obviously do not do what I do for the money. I do it for the impact and influence money just helps pay the bills. I will avoid some of you've heard it today. You said she saw the guy yeah do I know that like it's not a surprise. People sometimes say that as if I'm oblivious to my own self. I called Sir often awkward at the drive-through restaurant which by the way, should not be called a drive-through restaurant if your 16 learning to drive. I really hope you understand that and out when you go to the drive-through restaurant and order your food. You can see the menu in the microphone but they cannot see you so say back to me on think you for your order. That'll be 682 at the window. Sir, my voice is low, or amplified by microphone. I don't get mad, it's not their fault it's really good to be funny when I get up there and I'm not a guy the kid working there is looking at the receipt looking up, and I know what he's thinking. He said there is supposed to be a guy in this car and I don't get mad, it's not their fault. I have a little boy I got it so I am so I take it and say think you usually and drive off. You know, I learned a long time ago to persevere, to believe in the believing of my believing that there would be reasons that it would make sense and it has. I don't need a microphone I'm not going to turn it off to prove it. But low voices go further in a room that high voices in my creator God knew exactly what he was doing when he chosen his love to make me me because he knew exactly who it would be calm for his glory. I've been to 30 countries overseas have been the many places without sound systems and it does not matter I could get a high school gym across town to do an assembly and have the sound system bus so bad that it could be turned off in my voice will carry the back row of the highest bleachers because God is good because God is a good creator and God is an intentional personal and I grieve for the children who don't yet believe that who come to confusion naturally because a culture is chaotic and people are messy. I pray that all of us would, in our humility choose to change your attitude toward the things we cannot change. Change what we can and leave the rest alone and change our attitudes because it honors God.
If I walk wounded through my days angry at my voice that I'm angry at my creator and I say I dismiss you, and before long I'll begin to dismiss more of myself and then I'm not here and I think that grieves God because when I was a lump of clay and he made me he knew when I was a kid. It made no sense. I praise God for parents or grandparents and teachers or pastors and my brother Dave and others who came alongside and where the boundaries were the blessings that allowed me to become David writes in Psalm 139 and 13 and 14 verses that are very well known many moms admit that they memorize these verses before they even conceived their first child, David writes for you. God formed my inward parts, you knitted me together in my mother's room. I praise you for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works, my soul knows it very nifty and requires careful attention. The knitter chooses the size of the stench and the color of the yarn before ever getting started in the knitter better know in advance if she's making a star for a sweater. God knows what he's doing and I know that sometimes that's hard to believe because things just don't go the way that we hoped. I respect the. The grief that's embedded there, but it doesn't take away the truth that God is intentional and he trusts us to become it says in the Scripture that were fearfully made. It's the same fear is the fear of God in the Old Testament, which doesn't mean we ought to be afraid of him, but it means is you know that we should honor him in and be in all God wants us and our children to fearfully respect who is chosen is to be ladies and gentlemen. When I trusted Christ and realized the truth here. Oh, I praise God in the spirit allowed at first to transform my beliefs about myself and it changed everything were wonderfully made your unique there's no one like you, which is maybe good. I don't know you might be very good one is in you know that if you ever get in trouble with the law they can find you because nobody has been created and nobody will ever be creative with your fingerprints. That is how creative God is.
I look at some middle schoolers that if Everett lost a bloodhound can smell something that is theirs and go find them because nobody smells like them.
I mean, that might be good to. I don't know. Nobody smells like you and nobody has your fingerprints are more important than that. Nobody has your brain cells has your exact passion pursuit intellect birth order in years. The unique package that you and again unwrapped the people who left you to discover why it is and that my soul knows it very well do you know the difference it makes when a child, teen or adult knows in the soul very well. They were fearfully and wonderfully made, it changes everything. I was tall as a child I was too tall once over the elementary school I attended set down the middle of my mama that's big double bed and declared my mom. I did not want to be tall anymore.
I'm here today, largely because my mother did not say will get over you to be tall, which is frankly what a lot of children told me their parents appear to do them, which is to dismiss their pain.
Sometimes it's because of our own pain. Sometimes there's a busyness in isolation and there's just a mess that enters in hello ladies and gentlemen, my mom heard my heart cried told my dad her husband got her daughter were at the perceived problem that can't be changed. She's going to be tall.
What can we do they problem solved to all of you who are solution focused parents and grandparents and teachers. I applaud you when somebody a spouse or an aging parent or child shares their heart with us that we would hundred by looking for the solution by the end of the week I was enrolled in tap dance class bubble is really cool about tap and ballet was that I got to be the center of the back row which I decide it was a position of high honor because I was the only one allowed to be there and so I went from being too tall to be cool tall I was in elementary assembly a while back and I was telling my story to try to help the kids believe in themselves and a little boy came up to me at the and is a lady. I just wanted you to know I don't think you're too tall. I think you're very cool tall love that it's is just something about you that you need to change your attitude toward and maybe you can't do it on your own. Maybe there someone in your world who would inspire you to greatness because you have chosen to be vulnerable and transparent.
When I taught second graders.
I had no trouble hanging things in the ceiling because of my height. Other teachers would borrow me. It was easier than grabbing the Lateran Dragon it down the hall when I travel overseas. I have no trouble putting the suitcases into the overhead bin and getting them down when the land and now you can see me like I can before futility a public speaker be like where that lady my height does not make me effective. It just adds to the ease of it all.
I was in Thailand many years ago and during my message that I use that forefoot timeline and when I was all finished up came to me of 4 foot 10 tie will like in my personal space almost ran to me I was frightened. She's right here I am 4 feet 10 and I didn't know if I was supposed to apologize and then she said this past summer I was in a car accident in the jaws of life had to be used to cut the car open and I was told by the paramedics if I was 1 inch tall red be brain-damaged or dead. And then she said I am who I am supposed to be to arrive at a conclusion that trusts God's a beautiful thing change. We can change but if I have that with NBA basketball players. I'd be short know I just feel short change gratitude to the things it cannot be changed. I want children to live long to be strong and find out why they are the who they are.
Ephesians 210. In the New Testament. Such a beautiful passage for we are God's workmanship is masterpiece fearfully and wonderfully made, set apart for his purposes. We are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.
He has created all of us. Everyone you'll ever meet everyone.
You'll never meet. He has printed all of us with good gifts inside beforehand, that we would walk in them.
We would use them to change the world for good and not ugly were credit on purpose or purpose.
There's something there to bring forth. There's hope there another element of my story is that spelling does not come naturally to me. The English language makes no sense. Can I just put that out there. Not only does the English language makes absolutely no sense but spelling slays me. I mean it just doesn't come naturally to me like the C we don't need it. It's in the word science SCI isn't the ass doing its job just fine. I can say but that's getting what about Chuck like the CHL I can change I have 1/27 letter for that sound in the C so here's the thing.
Ladies and gentlemen, I did not say spelling is hard. That's a lie there's a lot of words and easy to spell. I did not say I cannot spell that's a lot. Don't lie to yourself. If you allow yourself you will never become God intended for you to be what I said was spelling does not come naturally to me.
Don't ever let your weaknesses win always lead with your strengths. It's almost like I heard the audible voice of God suggested I write a book. I like but spelling God's like I don't care. You know, spell check, which doesn't always work and ideas that more people would be able to be influenced by through the written word than they ever went through the spoken voice and so I humbled myself. I surround myself with the support system and I've written six books. Why, because God is a good creator and I'm not the lad a challenge. Please leave with your strengths know what they are. If you're not sure, ask someone to help you.
I travel with the misspellings dictionary. No joke.
It's no different than a calculator for cuter struggles with math facts and misspellings dictionary.
You look up the word knowledge the way it should be spell which is NOW LE GE and you will find it there and then they tell you the correct way so don't quit living when life is hard. Don't quit being or becoming when something is a challenge.
Find the strength. Why do I still write books with the thesaurus because I can look up an easy word to find the harder word because if you don't how to spell it you can't find it in dictionary. Amen. So to all of you parents to save your children go look it up.
Stop that you're laughing it is not funny what story are your kids living better question what story is God writing for them to live. I could not of been a jockey on a horse frightening. I'm 61. Can you picture me on a horse.
Try to be a jockey like I'm eating my knees's bad one of the most damage and logical ever tell a child that you can be whatever you want, you can only be what God intended for you to be running chosen is love to make you you when you set up the potter's wheel and winning that you together, knowing who you are. Allows you to become that agent of change for God's glory help children grieve what they wish were true the power you have as a ministry the power you have as pastors and parents to help children grieve what never will be to accept what is sweetheart I've heard your heart. I I recognize the pain.
I share your sorrow, sweetheart. It is what it is and we still declare in our family that God is good, and trust me that the longer you live, the more that will be made clear to you somehow have the conversation to spin it. I was in a group of with a group of young children and I was sharing again my story because part of the passion we have it celebrate kids is that children would become, and the children would believe the suicide rate in our country is frightening. The second leading cause of death for 10 to 14-year-olds is suicide. It has tripled in the last 10 years we have got to help them be not just pro-life but pro-eternal. I probe on the life and probe living.
It is worth living is worth it.
Life is worth living.
The future can be bright and I was trying to say these kids that what I was raised. I didn't get it. I was at two tall chatty Kathy you got in trouble for talking some time and now look what God is done goes public to also look what my creator has done and I received a bunch of thank you notes slipped under the hotel room door because the person hired me, knew where I was staying. Trent wrote thank you for motivating me to the next chapter of my story. Michaela wrote I will find my true story when I'm older I don't know now because my story is just starting but I love knowing that she knows there's a story starting Hunter wrote. I did not know I had a story. But now that I do know I can't wait to find out what my story is those of us who love children and teens get to partner with God to help the creative intent continue God creates us in the womb. The together fearfully and wonderfully made.
Wonderful hours work, so my soul knows it very well. I hope that's true.
If you and I believe God's creative intent continues in the interactions and relationships and encounters and opportunities that he allows children to have. That's you don't ever take lightly the conversations you have with children. Don't ever take lightly the field trips and the games you play and the walk should go on because in those conversations. Life happens. We have got to make sure we know why were alive and help our kids know it too.
Why are you who you are. My package of chatty Kathy with a low voice were spelling as a challenge and I'm two tall perfect package for this which your story. Which story do you dream your children and teenagers will live out father God we think you for your creative intent. Father got I think you that you chose to make us because of the love you have chose to make us us and would you help us become. We want to be more like you. We want to serve you well with the gifts that you provided with the perfect package we help us surround us with your goodness your people and your systems that we can walk forth and do good work. Lori and I pray with a lot of optimism in the name of Jesus. Amen. And thank you so my thank you when Dr. Kathy Cook comes to our campus here at Focus on the Family in Colorado Springs and we been listening to a great presentation she gave to our staff just about a year ago. It was a great message was in it and I so appreciate Dr. Kathy's willingness to share her areas of vulnerability and how the Lord has been able to use those for his glory. And I think she did a great job of illustrating the fact the children really need to hear that God has a purpose for their lives tragically. It's become too easy for kids to give up even to the point of ending their life because they don't see any purpose to it and Dr. Kathy was a contributor to a collection of resources.
We developed called alive to thrive, which is designed to help adults proactively address issues that can lead to suicide and we want to get this information out to as many parents, teachers and youth leaders as we can soar offering it for free.
We don't want there to be any barriers. So if you'd like to help us prevent teen suicide.
Please make a donation today to support this work and when you make that donation of any amount will send you a copy of Dr. Kathy Cook's book 8 great smarts as our way of saying thank you in this book really is can help you identify it and then affirm your child's areas of intelligence, multiple areas with Dr. Kathy Cook calls their smarts so that they can feel more empowered to tackle some other areas that maybe they aren't so strong in it really is an excellent resource. I keep referring to it. I hope you will as well when you get your copy of eight great smarts from us here at Focus on the Family. It begins with a phone call are numbers 800 the letter a in the word family or follow the link in the episode notes to donate to the work of focus and get that book also when you're online. Be sure to look for the link to our suicide prevention resources alive to thrive. This is a pretty rich curriculum with a lot of heart and passion. A lot of practical help and it's all free for you. It's online and you'll find a link in the notes next time will hear from Amy Carol and Sherry Gregory as they encourage you to embrace who you are. In order to live your life well I read Jack's foolish, the lonely and then we see any tank says weaknesses in teams as things that we cannot on behalf of Jim Daly and the entire team. Thanks for listening to this Focus on the Family podcast. Please take a moment and leave us a rating and give some feedback as well important for others were searching for and need to find great programming like this. I'm John Fuller inviting you back next time. As we once more help you and your family thrive. January is sanctity of human life, month, and you can join Focus on the Family as we love every heart with you. Join us for the March for life in Washington DC. Or make an impact where you live. We can all stand up for the truth, and for life. Share your heart, your kindness and your hope with others through the 2021 March for life and sanctity of human life, firstname.lastname@example.org/March for life focusonthefamily.com/March for life