Today's Quote

“If people let government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls of those who live under tyranny.” Thomas Jefferson

Monday, January 4, 2010

When Families Clash

My husband and I have moved ourselves and our family out of the "mainstream" society and their way of thinking. As Christians, we have moved toward a more biblical structure in our family. We have moved toward a more Biblical agrarian life in which we believe that it is our duty to be producers, instead of consumers. We also look more closely at the things which influence our children and come into our home. All this being said, it has caused conflict within the extended family that still lives within the "world". They simply don't understand and don't want to understand why we have chosen this and have even gone so far as to accuse us of damaging our children's well being. In fact my oldest daughter was misbehaving at a family get together over the holidays and my husband corrected her rather sternly. Apparently, this did not sit well with the family gathered as one member later called me and told me that I needed to tell my husband to "Just shut up and let you handle it". I was really shocked at that statement. Even not understanding that my husband is the head of our household and answerable to God for the actions and behavior of his children, how could anyone suggest that one parent tell the other to shut up when disciplining a child?! So when I replied with the fact that I would in no way shape or form tell him to shut up and explained the reasons for it, I was told that I was being ridiculous. Modern society seems to think that only the mother has the right to discipline and teach the child and the father is just to be some buffoon that stays in the background. I find that so sad, because every child needs the direction of a father. Maybe that is what is wrong with the current generations coming along is the lack of a strong father. I remember when my Dad was talking about his childhood and when he would get into trouble. He said he always thought it was funny and would continue with his troublemaking as long as my grandmother was disciplining him. However, all she had to say was, "Do I need to go get your daddy?" and the very thought of Grandaddy being called into the matter would set him on the straight and narrow. Face it, we mothers can be suckers when it comes to our little ones, however daddy's can stand their ground. I know I have been guilty of caving into my children, sometimes simply because I am tired and don't have the energy. However, that is why God placed Dads in charge. They have the energy and can effectively correct and guide swiftly, whereas with a mother the correct and guide can take half a days arguing and going back and forth, so to speak. We are also very aware of the things that our children see, hear, and read. I have written before that I do not approve the Twilight series and will not allow it in my home, nor will I allow my daughter to see it elsewhere. For some reason this series has caused no amount of problems with the "family" and us. They think we are simply cruel and unreasonable. Instead of simply accepting our decision, time and again we are faced with our family pushing this Twilight. I thought I had made it very clear that this issue was not up for discussion. During the last month it has been brought up time and again. One family member wanted to take her to the movies to see, you guessed it, the latest release of the Twilight saga. Then got irate when I said no. Another family member had gotten it for her daughter and wanted them to watch the movie together, then got upset when I said no and that maybe we needed to go home if that was the plan for the evening. And on and on it goes. For some reason with this movie being pushed by so many of my family members it simply strengthens my resolve that my Christian daughter should not watch a movie that has so many adults (and children) alike bewitched so much that they need to push this film/book series. For me it truly strengthens the thoughts that I have that this thing is loaded with withcraft. Yep, I said it. Yes, I know it is about vampires, but witchcraft often surrounds things that are not blatantly about witchcraft. Even so, vampirism is against God's word! Can't these professed Christians see this?! I feel like no one can see the implications of a girl giving up life for eternal death. Do they not see that Jesus Christ is eternal life and that choosing eternal death is to not only separate from Him, but choosing hell. Is there nothing wrong with this in their minds? Then there have been the issues of our living a more agrarian life. I don't understand why someone would care whether we raise our own food or buy it from the grocery store. Why would that be a concern to anyone? However, in our extended family most see that as the most ridiculous thing they have even heard. Of course, most of the "concerns" of theirs is that our food is not safe because it hasn't been inspected. Even when you try to educate them that our food is safer than anything they could buy in the grocery store (because I don't fertilize my spinach with raw sewage) they simply won't listen. They simply think that living a simpler life in which we produce what we can for our own needs is choosing to live in poverty. Only poor people live this way, is there comment. My children are suffering because they are forced to eat vegetables instead of processed waffles and pre-made peanut butter and jelly sandwiches with a side of processed junk. I am setting my family up for a serious stay in the hospital by feeding them eggs which have not been bleached first to get rid of the germs! How cruel can I be to make the kids eat meat that was walking around a few days ago and which they petted and helped to care for! My whole point in this is that once the choice is made to step outside of the "mainstream" way of life and thought process then the road can be hard even within the extended family. Even though the decision is a good one and a noble undertaking, the road is not easy and there will be many if not most who simply don't and can't understand. What the trigger to there understanding will be, I don't know. I haven't found it yet. Just know that we are not alone even if it seems like it. God is always with us and through Him we will find our strength to continue on the path that He has set for us. We are also not alone in our struggles as there are others struggling, just like us, all around the world. However, I have to say this....despite the family clash, I have never been more at peace, never been more content, never been happier than I have been living outside of the "world". It was only when our family chose to live within the Biblical outline and plan of God that we found true peace and happiness even though the "world" tries to make us think we are unhappy. For parents this is difficult because we can withstand the attacks of the world, however it is difficult for our little ones. They don't have the fortitude just yet and the world tries very hard to make them feel unhappy about their life and what they are "missing" out on. It is our job more than ever once we start to step out of the mainstream flow of humanity to armour our children so that they can grow to withstand the assault. It is no longer a black and white world in which we live, but gray has become not only acceptable but the chosen color. With God's help we can separate the gray into black and white and teach our children to do the same. May God be with us all!


Kelle said...

AMEN sister! PTL for your blog today, it is of comfort.
I'm sure you know, you are not alone in this worldly vs, Godly battle. We too have fought this for over a decade, with both sides of the family. My MIL is somewhat more understanding( as a Christian), but feels, that we are to closely guarding our Dd and she NEEDS to be exposed to the world. My parents think our Dd is mentally handicapped( she isn't, she has an inoperable brain tumor that has created learning challenges, due to it's location in her brain) and therefore is useless to society and just NEEDS to be placed on SSD for the rest of her life.*sigh* Her Dad and I feel very strongly that God indeed has a place for her in this life. She is so gifted with children and animals( what you'd term as a Whisperer) it is amazing to watch.

Oh, Yes the dreaded series of worldly books and movies. My parents, who should know better *sigh*, gave our Dd the "Twilight" book for Christmas. When I inquired why, their reply, " It's on the Best Sellers list, so it must be good!" Our Dd is 18 yrs old and she has enough godly sense to know she doesn't want to read it, after we explained what it was about. We battled this with each and every Harry Potter book and movie too, my advice is that you and your Dh is to stand firm and keep saying NO.

Sadly, for us, this issue continues it doesn't just go away. Now they feel like you'd said in your blog, that we are causing ourselves to live in unnessary poverty. As I'm quite sure you know we aren't living in provery, we feel very blessed and rich in our faith, we want for nothing!

Thanks for posting, it is comforting to be reminded that we're NOT alone in our battles against the World.

Marmee's Pantry said...

AMEN!! Stick to your guns & the life that the Lord has led you to. You should tell them the ppl pay big $$ to go on vacations to places like where you happily live everyday! lol

As for the Twilight books/movies, I agree. The same w/the Harry Potter crud. Our girls never saw it when they were growing up. It amazes me that ppl I KNOW are committed, stead-fast Christians let their kids read/see these things. Amazing. Things like these are why the Bible tells us to renew our minds against what the world teaches.

Personally, I think your family is a little jealous ~ jealous that you have done have 'pulled off' a life-style & have relationships w/your husband & kids they probably don't have. You are also willing to WORK to what you have, too, & they may not be. There can be a jealousy in that, as well.

Keep it up. God bless you, your family & your efforts.

Blessings from Ohio...Kim<><

Janice said...

We are just beginning our exit from mainstream society, but I can already relate to some aspects of your post. Like others have said, it's nice to know that we're not alone in our struggles. Stand firm and united in your decisions and be comforted in your reasons for making those decisions. I really enjoy your blog. Thanks for sharing!

Kelly said...

Maybe we haven't left enough of the world behind, or maybe we aren't that close with extended family, as we don't seem to have the degree of clash you describe. DH's side of the family is already committed Christians, with one brother's family of 8 kids being homeschooled and growing a portion of their own food. My parents are the only extended family that live in the same state, so we're probably just not exposed to it that often. I did make a comment on fb about Christian women that were wrapped up in Twilight that cause quite a stir with extended family, but it just showed me that their professed Mormon faith is just what I thought-smoke and mirrors, lacking any substance because Jesus has been misrepresented in that religion.

As for the poverty-I don't get it either. I can pay $14.69/gallon for raw cow's milk or I can buy a cow and get it basically for free! Or sell it for that price too! It's not poverty to consume something that expensive on a daily basis! Or how about $4 for a dozen free range eggs? I'd rather own the chicken and get the bug control benefits than pay that much for eggs.

You already know that you're taking good care of your family, so I don't need to tell you that, but keep it up and give it all to God!

The Girl in the Pink Dress said...

I have been late getting back to blogland, and I'm so sorry I missed this! This is a topic that I usually have a *lot* to say on...
Good for you for standing your ground. Believe me, I've seen the affects of books like these- unhealthy obsession, as well as much more serious issues. I don't understand why your family simply won't let it be, it shouldn't be an issue. I'm praying for you. I completely abhor the Twilight series- I know what's in them. What is attractive about someone who is dead, and drinks blood? It baffles me. I've read passages of the book, and honestly, it's not a healthy view of life in general, not to mention vampires, etc. The last book has some very R-rated material, and yet I know many christians still raving over it. Good for you for protecting your daughter and sticking to your guns! I love books, but since the Harry Potter craze and now Twilight, I have to really check them out to see if they are decent. A good website I'd recommend is they are not christian, but are family oriented and give safe, detailed reviews on books, movies, music, etc. Your blog is a real encouragement to me, keep it up!
The Girl in the Pink Dress

Chelsey said...

Fantastic post and thoughts! How I would love to get out of "suburbia" and out into the country to be more self sufficiant! Maybe you could write a step by step guide for those stiving for that! :) Glad I found your blog! :)