There are some youngsters near and dear to me that have recently embarked upon that vulnerable journey in life referred to as adolescents. And I am being reminded of the pitfalls that await our children during this section of their life’s journey as I learn of the struggles my loved ones are facing.
Therefore, I pass along the following in the hopes that if you or your adolescent is having a difficult time maneuvering through the challenges of this time, you may find these ‘words’ to be the lifesaver for you that they were for me.
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As my children came along, I knew, from my own experience, that I had to find a way to protect them from the damage negative words could inflict, especially negative teasing. Thus I believe God prompted me to establish a rule in our household of “no negative teasing”.
Negative teasing at some level inflicts pain. Sure on the surface we may be laughing but down deep we aren’t! It certainly doesn’t build up someone to teasingly call them ‘stupid’ now does it?
But the most revealing and powerful force to defeat the negative thinking that years of hurtful words had produced in my own life, regretfully didn’t come to me until I was in my 50’s. Fiery Darts: Satan’s Weapon of Choice is the compilation of lessons given to me in how to overcome and/or heal from the damage caused by hurtful words.
It is from this perspective of healing that I offer these words to parents, for we must pass on to our adolescents an awareness of the Truth thought found in Ephesians 4:29 (opening photo)! We should model the Truth of this verse in the words our children hear coming from our mouths before we try to impress upon them how to filter their words through this Truth.
We need to teach our children how to handle the hurtful words (whether teasing or otherwise) that is inflicted upon them. For without this guidance our children will be tempted to believe things about themselves that are nothing but lies.
We must teach our children that God’s Word is the most powerful of all weapons to destroy the enemy’s fiery dart attacks. However, we must first learn how to use that weapon for ourselves then we will be equipped to pass along successfully what we have learned to our children.
Within the Bible are counter attacks for every fiery dart Satan throws at us and our children. Therefore, it is imperative that we teach our children (after first learning for ourselves) how to recognize Satan’s fiery darts, then how to call upon God’s Word to defend themselves. (Ephesians 6:16)
A FINAL WORD
Please remember that the flesh is weak. If we do not arm ourselves with the Sword of Truth, our flesh will not be able to resist the temptations that will arise from the fiery dart attacks. But by wielding the Sword of Truth against every hurtful word, the tempter’s plans to weaken us will be demolished. (2 Corinthians 10:4-5)
It’s been about 6 years since I first began promoting the message contained within my book, pictured above. My heart has been encouraged time and again when readers share with me their testimonies of successfully defeating a fiery dart attack after applying the concepts from my book. These testimonies motivate me to persevere in promoting this liberating message. (As a matter of fact, I am working on an expansion of my book–adding chapters covering parenting, teens struggle with self-worth, and difficulties of loosing a spouse to death. I will need your prayerful support for this is a daunting task!)
But as I listen to comments from some of those who have been exposed to the message of fiery darts, it is apparent that something is missing. Even for those who are making the connection between fiery darts and negative thinking, I’m still hearing comments flavored by too much defeat and frustration.
When I think of the bondage in which negative thinking held me, on how it almost destroyed me then compare it to the freedom in which I now live, I can’t imagine why anyone would desire to remain in such bondage!
I do believe people are becoming more aware of how to identify the fiery darts with which they are wrestling, especially after making the connection between negative thinking and fiery darts. However, I’m getting the feeling that they think the battle is over just by identifying the fiery dart thought that attacked them. Yet, just saying, “That’s a fiery dart,” does absolutely nothing to deflect the negative thought.
May I respectfully remind you that after the fiery dart is acknowledged, it’s imperative that it be rejected, and following that you MUST replace it with a Truth thought! (refer to the tab entitled, The 3R’s of Fighting Fiery Darts, of this blog)
Because that fiery dart will return until its mission has been accomplished.
(which is, remember, to steal, kill, and destroy the works of God in your lives!)
Just acknowledging the fiery dart’s attack does little to eradicate it. And rejecting it only leaves a void that must be filled. When it returns, as it surely will, if it is does not find a Truth thought in its place each and every time it attempts to enter your mind, it will pick up where it left off, poisoning attitudes and actions designed to weaken your faith and make you ineffective as a Christian. Just what the enemy had in mind all along.