Probably, there is no relationship in life that is impacting you more in your life than the relationship between your parents.
- If you have good parents, you say to yourself: „I want to be like them.“ They are a good role model to you. And this will help you a lot, especially when parenting your own children.
- If you have bad parents, you say to yourself: „I will never become like them.“ The problem is: this „never“ rarely works. By default, you will parent your children the same way your parents did – or do exactly the contrary of how they did it.
- And probably, everyone of us have parents who range somewhere in-between. So we have both things we cherish and things we will „never“ do like them.
This „never“ is essentially an inner vow, a self-directed promise that we make out of our frustration/pain (often because of an traumatic experience). Consciously or subconsciously, we promise ourselves: „This will never happen again!“
Dealing with this kind of things is painful. We like to move on, we want an easy-going life, so we tend to push the pain down. We prefer to walk the familiar way – protecting ourselves. This is a trust issue – because God wants to be the one protecting you.
So, what can we do?
As we become aware of such inner vows, we can bring them to the cross – Jesus already died for them. We can exchange our wrong beliefs and promises with his truth, listening closely to what he says about them, making ourselves dependant on Him again.
And then, we need to practise to live in this freedom, by reminding ourselves of the truth again and again, deciding to trust Him again and again. These decisions will literally change/re-train the chemistry in our mind and body, the way how we instinctively react to certain situations. That’s why it often takes more than a day to change a habit. That’s why it took Israel many years to arrive in the Promised Land – because God took the time to disciple them as a nation.
These processes are a lot of hard, emotional work. But o the freedom you experience afterwards!
„Since this is the kind of life we have chosen, the life of the Spirit,
let us make sure that we do not just hold it as an idea in our heads or a sentiment in our hearts,
but work out its implications in every detail of our lives.“
(Galatians 5:25 The Message)