Are you helping or hurting the one you love ?
PAIN CAN MOTIVATE CHANGE.
Many are godly parents who have prayed and fasted for their child,
yet they watch painfully as their child continues down a path of
rebellion and destruction. One mother said, "I pray for my children,
but why is God so slow to answer?" So what can parents or
grandparents do to help their loved ones? Stop enabling!
Enabling - Offering the Wrong Kind
Enabling is rescuing your loved ones so that they do not experience
the painful consequences of their irresponsible decisions. Enabling
is anything that stands in the way of persons experiencing the
natural consequences of their own behavior. Tracy, the young mother
of two boys, has mastered the art of manipulating her family into
enabling her behavior. Often arrested on drug charges, she would say
to her parents, "Do you want to see the mother of your grandchildren
locked up in jail?" The last time it happened , the parents were
planning to mortgage their home so they could afford the bail
Galatians 6:7-8 speaks to Christians
about this with a simple but blunt truth. "Do not be deceived: God
cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. The one who sows to
please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction;
the one who sows to please the Spirit, from that Spirit will reap
God's Word is specific. Christians -
don't be deceived! Bad actions have painful consequences, even when
our children or loved ones are involved. Thankfully, God can use
those consequences for His purposes - if we don't get in His way.
When you stop enabling, get ready
for more trouble!
When you stop offering the wrong kind of help, your loved ones
may get very angry with you - and for a "good" reason. You’ve
stopped rescuing them. Now they are beginning to feel the painful
consequences of their irresponsible decisions. Just before
mortgaging their home, Tracy’s parents were persuaded to stop
enabling her. They let her stay in jail for almost a year - feeling
the full impact of her irresponsible behavior. Angry and frustrated,
Tracy accused them of not loving her. But while she was in jail, the
drugs cleared out of Tracy’s system and she began to think clearly
again. She joined a Bible study, became a Christian and entered Teen
Challenge when she was released.
When you make a decision to stop
enabling, like Tracy’s parents did, you must stand on the facts -
especially if you have a tender heart. You must continue to rehearse
the fact of how your loved one’s actions are destroying his or her
life - and how enabling this to continue is the worst thing you
Six Characteristics of the enabler
1.) Works for self-improvement. “If
I were a better parent/grandparent/friend, my loved one wouldn't
be doing this."
2.) Changes the environment to
accommodate the person with the problem. " Let’s change schools
and get our child away from those troublemakers."
3.) Takes on the whole world in
defense of a loved one. " The whole legal system is corrupt, and
my child/grandchild/friend is getting unjust treatment." 4.)
Their pain increases. Because the loved one is still acting
irresponsibly, the enabler’s pain and frustration deepens.
5.) Communications deteriorate.
Because the issues are unresolved, defenses are high. Both the
enabler and the loved one are often deluded about reality.
6.) Enabling is habit-forming. The
enabler keeps offering the same kind of help. Sometimes the
enabler derives such deep satisfaction from "rescuing" someone
that he or she never assesses whether the assistance is helping
or hurting the loved one.