We’re all going to find ourselves facing tragedy at some point during our lives. We’re all going to walk through seasons of darkness. And when we do, it’s important to know how to respond. While most of us are taught what to do with the good things in life, very few of us are taught what to do in the face of tragedy. And because of that, we often find ourselves covering it up, lashing out, or ignoring it all together. But what if there was a better way to deal with tragedy? The good new is that there is, and it’s found in the Bible. The Bible not only shares stories of people just like us facing tragedy, but also shows us how to face it and move toward healing. This week we’ll take a look at how Jesus walked with and responded to someone going through a serious tragedy. Through that story we’ll discover that the first step toward healing is acknowledging our feelings.
PARENT TOOL // CRISIS GUIDE
With teenagers, the pressure seems to increase as their responsibility does. The potential for them to experience a crisis-- whether from bad decisions, rejection or trauma-- also increases. Sometimes it's easy to want to jump in and fix things, but supporting their efforts to handle their crisis helps them more.
Be aware of the signs that your teen is experiencing a crisis and don't take them lightly. Try to understand more than you feel like you know. See them for the adults they are becoming, be careful to respond, and offer more help if they need it.
We've attached the following Crisis Guides for parents of middle schoolers and high schoolers. We hope that you check them out and come alongside your kid(s) as they walk "through the darkness."
My guess is that in your house—like my house—there’s a constant tension between rules and relationships.
Your nine-year-old is supposed to help wash the car, but instead decides that riding his bike is a far more important to the functioning of the universe than cleaning your dirty minivan.
How do you respond?
On the one hand, you need . . .
rules—boundaries, guidelines and limits that make life work and shape character.
On the other hand, you need. . .
relationships—love for each other, respect and even some basic kindness.
But rules and relationships always seem to be in tension with each other, don’t they?
Clamp down too hard on the rules, and the relationship suffers. Or work hard on relationship and the temptation is to slack off on the rules.
To make matters more confusing, in most families, one parent tends to be the relationship parent and the other tends to be the rules parent.
If you’re like me, a rules guy, you are tempted to ground your nine-year-old for life, pull all video gaming privileges and be angry enough that most observers would assume you discovered your son had joined a street gang, not failed to pick up a sponge.
If you’re more the relationship type, you’ll abandon your bucket in the driveway, get on your bike and go have a picnic in a green field with your new found best friend while gentle music plays in the background and your rules-loving spouse drives the car to the junkyard in protest.
Left unchecked. . .
The rules parent thinks the relationship parent is a left-leaning hippie type left over from the sixties who thinks love can solve every problem.
The relationship parent becomes convinced they have married someone who should probably quit family to become a drill sergeant, robot or warlord.
Recognize the tension? So what do you do?
Here’s a maxim that I think can help those of us who struggle with this tension, which definitely includes my family:
Never ruin a relationship over a rule.
Never ruin a rule over a relationship.
READ MORE ON THE PARENT CUE BLOG