Friday, January 27, 2012

Do It....Yourself.....

I seem to be on a roll with "do it" ( Just Do It and Don't Do It ), so I will finish up with this. I have been thinking about this for awhile....and debating on the best way to write it. So I will make a humble attempt.

At first glance, telling someone to "do it yourself" can seem rude. Of course, there are circumstances when someone can't do it themselves. That's not the kind of do it yourself I'm talking about.

Love and Logic * has a parenting style referred to as a "helicopter". This parent hovers around waiting for their child to need something and rescues them when necessary. I hate to admit it, but I am usually a helicopter. As our kids get older, this is less and less "helpful" to them...and it has not been all that helpful for me either. There are times when I have made our kids feel like they can't do it on their own. There are times when I do something I know they should be doing themselves because, at the time, it seems easier. This will not help them as they venture daily out into the "real world". It has taken me TOO long to realize this.

One of the goals is to let them learn to have little failures when the price is still small. Our society in general, especially lately it seems, is to have as much as possible to be win/win. Unfortunately, in real life not everybody does win every time. If we constantly shield our kids from having to deal with the tough stuff, the world will beat them up when they're on their own with no buffer....or helicopter waiting to swoop in and fix it. The more I think about it the better it is to let them do it themselves while they are still in the boundaries of our homes.

One of my goals is to stop hovering and to step back and let our kids learn that they CAN do it themselves. If there is something they need to learn to be able to do it on their own, it is my responsibility to help them learn it so they are ready to do it themselves.

However, sometimes I wait around waiting for someone else to take care of something that I COULD easily do myself. Then I usually get a small (or not so small!) nudge to remind me I should do it myself and quit waiting!

There is a silver lining to this cloud of change for me. Even when I do it myself, I am not alone. God provides insight, information, other people and parents that cross my path to let me know that doing it yourself does not necessarily mean by yourself.

2 Timothy 2:15 Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.

*The Love and Logic website has a lot of good information and some free resources for parents and teachers. Love and Logic uses consequences of decisions as part of parenting. It is definitely worth checking out.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

DON'T do it!

Recently, I wrote about Just Do It!. It helped me put some perspective into what has been going on in my life and the lives of family members. However, as I wrote that and more recently, I have thought of the flip side of Just Do It, which is DON'T do it!

There are times in life when just do it is NOT the answer. For an extreme example, someone is standing on a ledge obviously thinking of jumping a great distance resulting (more than likely) in their death. In that situation, telling them to just do it would be very inappropriate. 

There are times in life where someone else (or maybe even us) is not on an actual ledge but definitely heading in the wrong direction. We feel we should warn them, but many people when you tell them what to do...they want to do the opposite. Telling someone (or ourselves) don't do it, even if it is for safety reasons can backfire. That should not keep us from speaking up though when necessary. This is probably how interventions start!

Then there are the times we need to tell ourselves don't do it. Maybe it is something kind of easy like just not having a second handful of peanut m&ms (yummm, oh wait, I digress). The more we want it, the harder it is to not do it. It's called temptation. 

Tempt: to entice to do wrong by promise of pleasure or gain Temptation: the act of being tempted

1 Corinthians 10:13 No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.

It is difficult to watch someone, especially those close to us, do things that we know are not good for them. That is when we need to maybe tell them once (or 2x), then back off, pray and let God handle the rest. We need to realize most of the time don't do it is not to cramp anyone's style. It is to keep them from harming themselves or others.

The Bible is full of don'ts. We can take that one of 2 ways. God is being restrictive and doesn't want us to have ANY fun OR God is providing boundaries that will keep us safe and keep us from self-destructing. Honestly, when left to our own devices? Most of us would do it and forget the consequences.

Genesis 3:22-23 And the LORD God said, “The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever.” So the LORD God banished him from the Garden of Eden to work the ground from which he had been taken. 

Do it! Don't do it! Choose wisely.

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

Playing with words.... Evolve? Adapt?

“For those who believe, no proof is necessary. For those who don't believe, no proof is possible.” Stuart Chase (Heard this on an episode of Criminal Minds...I rather like it)
One of the benefits(?) of a Yahoo homepage is that one can read all sorts of interesting "news" and stories. It is possible to become totally lost amongst clicks on different stories...and then realize an hour has passed. ugh.

One of the "headline" stories recently involved a "hybrid shark" ( Not that I think it is worthy of reading, just listing my source and my thought process (always scary territory!)

This article used the words "adapt", "evolution in action", and "survival of the fittest". I have always struggled with the evolution theory. Mainly because it seems to contradict the Bible. When our son was younger, I was pleased that his teacher had evolution on her list of report topics. I was also pleased that he chose this topic to discuss. However, the further he dug into info, the more I could see how people might get confused when presented with all of these "facts".

I like to find out the meanings of words. I looked up "adaptation" and "evolution" at (A GREAT resource)  Here's what I found:

Adaptation : adjustment to environmental conditions: as a : adjustment of a sense organ to the intensity or quality of stimulation b : modification of an organism or its parts that makes it more fit for existence under the conditions of its environment

Evolution: a theory that the various types of animals and plants have their origin in other preexisting types and that the distinguishable differences are due to modifications in successive generations

 a process in which the whole universe is a progression of interrelated phenomena

I find it interesting that even the definition of evolution includes the phrase "preexisting types" and "interrelated phenomena". This would seem to indicate that there needs to be SOMETHING there to make another something. It seems that more can be explained by adaptation of species rather than evolution.

It seems like we play with words. I don't have all the answers. I do have a few questions though that have been brought up along life's journey that have at least made me pause and go hmmmmm. Here are a couple.

If humans "evolved" from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Who took care of the first human?

What came first the chicken or the egg? 

If you can think of others, I would love to hear your thoughts/comments.

It seems that life started in motion. I do know that I can't explain many of the functions of the human body, but if we didn't have them, we wouldn't survive. I am amazed at the sheer number of species of many animals, insects, birds, fish, etc.  I am in awe of the variety of personalities of people in general, let alone those in my own family. I am touched by the compassion that people can show to complete strangers. I am moved to tears sometimes by hearing what others have gone through. 

I don't even pretend to have all the answers to the questions of life. So, in the meantime, I play with words and hopefully give you something to think about too.  ;)

Genesis 2:1 (NIV) Thus the heavens and the earth were completed in all their vast array.

Sunday, January 01, 2012

Just Do It!

More than an advertising slogan. The answer to procrastination. The fix for a messed up family. Just do it already. Find out what works and DO IT! The follow up? Stick with it. Easy to write. Hard to do.

I try not to make New Year resolutions. Deep down I know that I will not keep them anyway, so why bother? I think for most people? Kind of more like new year suggestions. (Kind of how some people want the 10 commandments....but that's a blog for another time)

I have some ideas in mind of things I would like to change in this new year. Ahhhh the new year. A time of reflection over the year(s) past and a hope for the year to come. However, it is so easy to get discouraged and overwhelmed when I realize some of the things I want to change are the same things I have wanted to change for years! Since I have way too many piles of paper, occasionally I run across my "to do" lists from days/weeks/years!?!?!? ago and there are things that should be on my current "to do" list....because it is STILL not done. Or I'll read through some old journal entries and realize that the things I wrote about that were not going well.....still are not going well.

I can't change time from zipping by. I can't change what other people do....or don't do. One of the only things I can work on? Is me. My reactions (or lack thereof) to things other people do.....or don't do.

It took me a LONG time to realize that done is better than perfect. Seeking perfection can keep us from finishing a project. It can actually even keep us from starting because it will never be done to the standard we set.

2012 my year of Just Do It. So when 2013 (yikes) comes, I can say I Did It! To the best of my ability and with God's help, I Did It!

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” 2 Corinthians 5:17 NIV

I pray that 2012 will find you able to accomplish your resolutions, goals, hopes, dreams....whatever you want to call them. When our paths cross another person's path, I pray that we take the time and the care to be involved. Just Do It!