lindaransonjacobs

Personal perspective and research about the child of divorce

Tag: single parents

A New Year and a New You

“My soul thirst for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God?” Psalm 42:2

The New Year is upon us. Have you thought about 2013 and how it is going to be better than last year? Some of you have been so busy this past year that without realizing it at the time, you might have gotten discouraged. Now you face 2013 with a sense of dread.

It might be because a single parent life is busy, hectic and down right tiring. That alarm clock sounds too loud and too early each morning. You stumble out of bed in a daze and jump right into the day’s activity. You think, “Oh God, I know I need to spend some time with you but I’ll do it tonight.”

The evening comes and goes in a blur of activity. You fall into bed and you try to talk to God or you open your Bible and try to read His word but before you know it that crazy alarm clock is sounding again. It is the call to a new day. You start over vowing that today will be better, calmer and you’ll be more in control.

When are you going to meet with God?

When are you going to be fed?

When are your spiritual needs going to come first before the kids, the job, your extended family, church and other responsibilities?

When nothing quenches that aching in your soul and you thirst for God’s living word is when. You can go anytime to meet with God but you have to take the responsibility of doing it. That means purposely setting the time aside. It means making an appointment to meet with God. How about before you eat lunch? How about before you start the car in the parking lot of where you work?

Everyday can be better than yesterday when you live it through the living Word. Start today to create a new you that will be full of joy and one who experiences the mercies of the Lord each day. There will be days of frustration. There may be grief and trauma that comes into your life this next year. But there is nothing that can keep you from the mercies of the Lord except you.

“Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:22

Blessings in this new year.
Linda Ranson Jacobs

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Ministering to Kids of Divorce at Christmas

Are you a children’s minister or know a children’s minister? Here is the link to a blog I wrote, “Ministering to Kids of Divorce at Christmas” on the Imagine Family Ministry site.

http://www.imaginefamilyministries.com/1/post/2012/12/ministering-to-kids-of-divorce-at-christmastime.html

Blessings as you minister to children of divorce all year long.

Children of Divorce and Church Services

Recently my friend Tiffany Crawford posted something on her blog that got me to thinking yet again about a controversial subject. (http://tiffanycrawford.org/2012/11/06/charismatic-churches-use-military-tactics/)

Maybe this subject is not controversial to anyone but me but that is probably because I’m one of the few people in children’s ministry and church work that thinks often about the child of divorce. The controversy is children’s church versus keeping children in big church, grown up church or simply worship service whatever you want to call it.

I am opposed to all the separating we do in churches today. It seems as though when a family comes to church the minute they enter the door everyone goes a different direction. While this might not be that big of an issue for two-parent families it can be a HUGE issue for single parent families. And I suspect it could be a big deal for two-parent families if they stopped to think about it.

I understand parents wanting their kids to attend children’s church because they want their children to have biblical concepts presented to them on their developmental level. And I understand parents want to worship and hear what is going one without being pestered or bothered by the children. However, I think kids should be in the church service with the parents at least occasionally; say at least once a month.

When my daughter was deployed to Afghanistan and I was living in their house helping with the grandchildren the kids attended church with me and my husband. They could have opted to go to the children’s departments but they chose to stay with us.

During the church service they played. They whispered. They dug in my purse for gum. They wrote on any paper they could find. But they also watched. They watched us pray. They watched me take notes and agree and sometimes disagree with the pastor. They watched us sing and worship. They watched Papa Bruce shake hands with others while he had his Bible tucked under his arm.

Then we saw it. We saw the 3 yr. old tuck his little notebook under his arm and walk around sticking out his little hand to shake hands with others. He was imitating his Papa Bruce. It was a blessing to behold.

We saw the 8 year old taking notes. We saw the teen slumping and pretending to not pay attention but we heard his conversation later in the week at the dinner table and while we were riding in the car together. He was hearing and getting it.

Children in single parent families need to be attuned to what is happening with their single parent regarding church and religion. These kids are exposed to two different homes and sometimes different religions.

I suspect my grandchildren didn’t want to be separated from me because I was a primary care giver during a stressful time in their lives. I was a connection to mom. They depended on me for emotional stability; for nurturing and for a lot of hugs and kisses.

The same holds true for children living with one parent. They need the physical presence of their parent with them in this building called a church. They need those few minutes a week or a month where they can connect with that parent with something that is bigger than their problems; bigger than their family issues and just plain bigger than them. They need church family.

I realize there are many that will vehemently disagree with me. That’s cool. All I ask is that you think about the child of divorce and the stress you might be adding to their lives when you separate them once again from their parent and from their siblings.

“All your sons will be taught by the Lord, and great will be your children’s peace.” Isaiah 54:13 (NIV)

Hello World Again

I posted this message under a different blog name. As an after thought I decided to make this more personal than professional. The professional blog will come later and I’ll let you know when it happens and where to find it. In the mean time enjoy my personal perspective about children of divorce and DC4K, DivorceCare for Kids.

So here we go. “A blogging we will go. A blogging we will go. Hi Ho the dairy-o a blogging we will go.”    

I’ve decided it is time to start blogging about children of divorce. I wrote and developed DC4K. It is important for the religious world to learn about how they can help the child of divorce.

Many churches use DC4K, DivorceCare for Kids. DC4K is a 13-week video based and Christ centered program to help children heal from the devastation of the break up of their family unit.

DC4K uses games, art and craft projects, read aloud story and videos each week. Different learning styles are accommodated through the varied projects.

Churches that run DC4K are amazed by the healing these kids experience in such a short time. School teachers have noticed a difference in kid’s behaviors in kids who have attended DC4K. Sunday School teachers notice how kids are more attuned to the scriptures and pay attention to the bible stories after DC4K.

I developed an wrote the DC4K curriculum. I poured into it everything I had learned over 30 years in working with children of divorce. Many of the stories are based on my own children’s experience of growing up in a divorced home. Other I stories are gleaned from children’s experiences in a therapeutic  child care that I ran for many years.

Stay tuned. I believe you will be blessed.

http://www.dc4k.org

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