with No Comments

2014_06_23 L2L_Insist

Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

{1 Corinthians 13:4-7 ESV, emphasis added}

I can’t tell you how long I sat looking at this one wondering what on earth I was going to say! Truth is that I am a control freak. There I said it! Over the course of the last year though, I have had that trait reworked and molded, sometimes painfully, in the Potter’s Hands and I can tell you from experience that it is a worthwhile and necessary journey. The beauty that comes from learning to yield to the moment, yield to His Way, and yield to the desires of others is remarkable to behold.

What exactly is the Word talking about insisting on your own way?

According to Thayer’s, the Greek words rendered as “insist on its own way” here mean “to seek, crave, and/or demand [regarding] himself, herself, itself, and/or themselves.”
Webster’s defines insist as “to demand that something happen or that someone do something; to say (something) in a way that is very forceful and does not allow disagreement.”

Looking at those definitions brings you face to face with the selfishness and arrogance involved in insisting on your own way. It means that you seek out and demand that what benefits you happens! That is a hard pill to swallow, especially when looking at it in regards to those we love and care for. That kind of control has no place in a heart filled with love.

But I’m not insisting on my own way

Insisting on your own way manifests most often in the form of a genuine desire to help your child live the best life they can and be the best person they can. We insist that we are simply teaching them the right way to do something or showing them how to pursue excellence. While both of those are great lessons, the trouble comes when we get locked into the mindset that the way that works best for us is going to be the way that works best for them.

Just as we had to discover our own path and stumble a bit along the way to discern what was beneficial for us, our children must have that same opportunity for themselves. How much better would it be for them to make those mistakes and build those discernment muscles at home, then to wait until they are out in the world where the stumbles really hurt? They deserve a chance to learn and grow what is best for them too and it is up to us to ensure that they have plenty of opportunities to do so.

Steps to move away from insisting on your own way

One of the best ways that I have found to counteract this tendency is to start actively encouraging your children to think things through and make decisions on their own. It is a process that takes a bit of time and effort, but the results are well worth the effort.

1. Start small. Pick things with minor consequences to start with, such what to eat for lunch or which activity to do first. This may sound like an activity only for younger kids, but you will be surprised at how much the older ones, even the teenagers will benefit from this as well.

2. Ask a series of questions to get them thinking realistically. What is your choice? Why is that your choice? What do you think the outcome will be if you act on that choice? What could be another way this could play out? Make sure that they are making a well informed decision.

3. Hold them to the consequences of that choice. Whatever they choose let them feel the results of their choice. If necessary gently remind them of the answers to their questions and the discussion you have with them when they made the choice.

4. Branch out and build on this regularly. Make this and intentional part of your parenting toolbox. It will build your confidence in them and allow you to feel more comfortable over time that you can allow them to do things their way and that they can even thrive on that path.

Ultimately insisting on your own way and trying to protect your children from the consequences of making a choice will do more harm than good. Letting them stretch out their wings and flap them around a bit may make things in the present a bit more messy, but they will be more equipped to fly when the time comes and that’s ultimately what it’s all about.

I pray you courage and strength beloved! Shalom!~

Surrendered to Him~





{Be sure to check out the entire #Learning2Love series!}

What impact has insisting on your own way had on your household?

Leave a Reply