Payment Past Due

Do those three words make your heart skip a beat? Why do three such simple words have such a profound physical affect on our body? We can even feel sick to our stomach when we see that phrase. It’s certainly not the words themselves, or even the arrangement of the words. It’s the cascade of thoughts which those three words unleash.

Suddenly we have visions of ruined credit, losing our car or even our home, embarrassment in front of friends and family, uncertainty about our family’s future and so much more. For some of us who grew up in economically unstable households it may bring back an avalanche of terrifying memories from our childhood; of turned off utilities, living with relatives or worse. Words have tremendous power over our lives- even power over our physical bodies.

And just as some phrases can strike terror into our hearts, so too can some words cause our spirit to soar and give us hope, courage and nurture peace in our soul. All of us need those words of encouragement if we’re to survive the long journey of homeschooling. I can tell you that I’m proud of the sacrifice you’re making as a homeschool mother. I can tell you that your contribution is changing a generation for good. And that will help- a little. But ultimately you need someone directly involved in your life to speak those words of blessing.

If your husband or parents or siblings aren’t speaking hope and Life to you, then get with your “Spit and Whittle Club” I talked about last Friday and encourage one another. Words can cause your spirit to soar and refresh your soul just as surely as the phrase “Payment Past Due” can cause your hands to tremble and your heart to race.

And guess what. Your children need those words of affirmation too. Look for opportunities today, and every day, to speak blessing and encouragement to your children. I understand that they didn’t make their bed for the 10,000th time or that they got a 53% on their spelling test. And those things need to be addressed. But they also need to hear words that cause their spirit to soar and cause them to hold their chin a little higher.

Make a list of 10 things about each of your children that you feel good about or are proud of. Make a plan to tell them so. If you were raised in a negative, critical environment growing up you may need to “schedule” positive comments just as you might schedule dental appointments or dishwashing chores. Yes- it’s that important!

And begin to teach your children to speak hope and encouragement to one another too. Children can be cruel and hurtful to one another; even siblings. But they can also be best friends and speak Life to one another. And the habits they nurture now will shape the way they raise their own children someday.

Proverbs 18:21

Psalm 57:4

Psalm 71:24

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4 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Zindra said,

    Steve, here’s my 10! (x4) on my blog 😀
    http://homeschooling4life.blogspot.com/2009/07/10-things-x4.html

    Thanks for taking the time to remind us, to appreciate the people we have in our life. I love you for that.
    Zindra

  2. 2

    Marya said,

    Thanks, I needed that!

  3. 3

    Joyce said,

    Sniff sniff… thanks steve, i needed that.

  4. 4

    Christine Juntunen said,

    Steve,
    It’s so true and something we need to be reminded of. My parents taught us that family is most important and today all 4 of us “kids” are very close. It’s something I need to do more with my own children. I have started telliing them that they will be each others best friends someday and I really hope that day is sometime soon!
    I’m glad I found your blog!
    Christine
    First Class Cowlitz County
    P.S. We are the “imbreds” from Cowlitz County. Hope you remember what that means.


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