Book Recommendations, Lies I Believed, Parenting

Lies I Believed: Parents Can Fix Their Children

Pray then like this: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name.

Matthew 6:9

One son held a grudge against a teacher. “Had I prayed with my son?” asked another teacher.


“Had I prayed for him?”


“Why wasn’t his attitude ‘fixed?'” she wondered. Maybe I hadn’t prayed enough.

“Had I encouraged another son who was shy?” asked a friend.


“Perhaps he needs an incentive.”

“One morning, I offered a dime for every time he said ‘Hello.’ He declined.”

My friend wondered if there was another way to “fix” him.

I learned quickly I could not “fix” my sons. However, I felt guilty when I couldn’t, which probably meant deep down I thought I should.

It was decades later that I read The Lord’s Prayer by Thomas Watson. He begins by examining what it means for God to be our father.

God is the best Father in terms of Wisdom. He knows the fittest means to bring about his own design. … God is the best Father because he can Reform his children. God knows how to make his elect children better—he can change their hearts.

Thomas Watson, The Lord’s Prayer

Have you been expected to fix someone?

Friendship, Lies I Believed

Do I Really Pick My Friends?

You can’t pick your family, but you can pick your friends.

Until I was fifty, I believed that ubiquitous lie. Sort of. The truth came to me as I sat on the sofa of a couple who had recently moved to another state. My husband and I had deviated from our route during a trip that was already too long—in both miles and time—to see them.

I remember thinking, “When we met seventeen years ago, I would never have imagined I would be sitting here today.”

When we met, we were outwardly incompatible, and we remained that way. However, we were friends. Shared life had made us friends.

Thinking back, I only tried to pick my friends twice. It didn’t work with Valerie in third grade. It did with Jennifer in seventh grade. All my other friends appeared. Divine encounters. Shared experiences. Shared ministries. Shared projects. Shared thoughts, All involved moments when something clicked that was out of my control.

Along the way I learned that I don’t control my friendships. Friends are a gift to be received, just as my family is a gift to be received.

Who is your unlikely friend?