When Fight Is Right

Cindi Gale

The idiom, “it takes two to tango”, is often used to imply that if a relationship is rocky, both parties are to blame. That sweeping assumption is false in many circumstances. Apply logic to it and it falls apart.

In some relationships, one party chooses to dominate, bully, deceive, betray or manipulate the other. Must the responsibility for the resultant rocky relationship also rest on the innocent party? If the victim raises objections, is his or her “fight” deserving of outsiders concluding, “it takes two … “?

Not when this is happening …

A person on the receiving end of mistreatment finds himself alone, judged, confused and wounded. Beyond the clear wrongs done to him, he is up against mind games. He is being indulged by the person he is deeply committed to. That person is just nice enough, giving enough, seemingly-essential enough, to keep him from leaving. Once his…

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When the Going Gets Tough, Part 3

Cindi Gale

If you know your position is righteous, you’ve made your point and your opinion is clear, but your child simply won’t accept it, you may have to let him have his way. Let him suffer the consequences, within reason. That’s still not giving up on him. There’s still hope going on there. Suffering consequences can be convincing where nothing else is.

It was not what you wanted to do and it pains you to know that trouble could have been averted, but he (or she) has insisted on his way. If you don’t give up the effort, the more you try, the more he will fight you. Some will fight to extremes you don’t want to go to, and will not give in to you. Some will become a worse person simply to win, so to give up the fight eliminates the conditions for his unrighteousness to become firmly established.

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When the Going Gets Tough, Part 2

Cindi Gale

Parenting children leaves little to no room for selfishness or neglect. I don’t mean neglecting THINGS — a messy house is just a thing — I’m talking about neglecting kids. Children at every age need love; they also need us to tackle attitude and behavioral issues.

Parenting difficult and oppositional children is especially demanding. Those who have done it know it is brutal. They can be a Parent Extraordinaire, but if their child applies his strong will to foolishness, they will often be measured not by their herculean parenting efforts but by the behavior of their child. The best of parents can be deemed a “bad parent”. It’s one of those horrible injustices inflicted on undeserving parents, because … well, people can be stupid.

Those who have been mistreated this way … Ignore the critics. Carry on. Your child’s excellent future depends on it.

Parents of obstinate, rebellious, or insolent children need…

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When the Going Gets Tough, Part 1

Cindi Gale

This three-part post addresses parents of difficult children, but can be generalized to apply to anyone hoping to influence a person who is morally ambivalent.

When a child’s alarming behavior threatens to establish itself as permanent traits through repetition, someone who cares is desperately needed to intervene on behalf of the child’s character and future. Tragically, some parents are so minimally invested in their kids or their standards are so low for them, that they are nonchalant about their own child’s highly concerning character and behaviors.

Those parents who do intervene are often criticized by those who have no comprehension of the child’s willfulness. Some kids are determined to sabotage their own lives and the peace of their family. Their parents’ words might be anything but sweet, but appropriate and necessary in a situation worthy of disapproval.

To an outsider who gets only a snapshot of a committed parent and child in a…

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The Time For Power

Cindi Gale

There is a God-appointed time when a person is ready to reign in his life’s call, and God chooses to supply His power, leadership and support. At that time, old or new enemies part and even flee in fear.

Prior to the appointed time, David lacked the full authority, leadership, wisdom and skills to gain and maintain power. While evading Saul, he was developing all that. Once his abilities were adequate for the job, he was positioned by God to remove the remaining opposition. Finally, the fullness of David’s ability to reign had its appointed time. When it was the time for David to take the throne that Saul had occupied, God was with him to successfully manage the kingdom. He became King in place of Saul. He put his skills to use and God was with him. Nations that were accustomed to superior might became powerless to overthrow David.

What…

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We Plan, God Prevails

Cindi Gale

Living in the landlocked heartland of the United States, I don’t often experience oceans. So during a visit to Mexico recently, I savored the sounds: the rolling waves of the North Atlantic lapping the shore, the calls of unfamiliar birds; the sights: sublime blues, greens and aquas; the sensations: warmth and dynamic, soothing sand underfoot.

There were kayaks and baby catamarans for us to journey a few hundred yards from shore. On each exertion, the swells of the waves lifted and rested, rocked and settled the small crafts. Had the winds been stronger and the waves more forceful, we would have been challenged to paddle or sail on course. But the days were merely breezy — it was on one of those afternoons while kayaking the gentle, stable swells, that a scripture came to mind:

“Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the LORD’s purpose that prevails.”

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The Last Will Be First

Cindi Gale

Matthew 20:16 – “So the last will be first, and the first will be last.”

Does it matter if someone’s promises from God were fulfilled quickly, when others endured decades before their arrival? It’s not up to us to measure the fairness of that.

Isaiah 55:8 – “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD.

Should a person disqualify himself because he thinks he should earn seniority? Should he anticipate what God may do, by corporate standards? Should he reject an offer that others “earned” by being faithful longer?

That would be a huge shame, a tragic waste of an opportunity. He should take what God offers even if he has suffered little, waited less, or believed only briefly compared to others.

Those who endured much didn’t do so without gain. Those who remained hopeful of God through challenging circumstances, amassed patience, character…

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