Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Generational Dispair

Lately, I have been scratching my head, wondering when America's values have vanished to? Why is it such a crime to be a stay at home mother? Why are Mothers walking around grocery store dressed as hookers, with children in tow? When did this become acceptable??? Why aren't modern day Mothers models for goodness?

Of course this is partly that I am over 40, and I'm sure every generation witnesses something they would consider *shocking* by the younger generation. At one time *bangs* seemed to be risque' to the mothers of daughters who were taking scissors to their foreheads. Those daughters went on the have girls that laughed at the horror of their Mums.

But that isn't the type of horror I'm facing, and I've been facing it my whole life: The *ME* syndrome. It goes something like this; "When do *I* get a break? When do *I* get to follow my dreams? *I'm* not happy in this relationship anymore. MEMEMEMEMEMEMEME. I see it in a male family member who won't apply himself to even WORK and he's over 50, and can work, just chooses not to.. .but lays around complaining and asking *why is this happening to ME?*... He just lost his house and wife... she isn't divorcing him, she just isn't going to support him in his self-absorbed misery.
Additionally I see my children struggle in their relationships. I feel like it's my fault, and I know Scott feels responsible too. We know that out of 5 children, if some of them fail in marraige, it's because we didn't teach them follow-through and endurance at an early age. They may get it right later on in life (We've done our best to be honest about our shortcomings and failures), but it is agonizing to watch them struggle. But God knows our heart... if only those who I pray fervently for would TRY to please God above themselves, they would have a fighting chance. But it's hard when generations before you have failed many times over. I don't blame them. I blame me.

I am guilty of this. When I was young, divorced. I had been properly trained to do so by my parents who divorced when I was 10, and they were also trained by my grandparents who were both divorced on both sides. I'm seeing a trend here, are you?
I can honestly say that when I was young, I didn't have the skills that spelled: ENDURANCE, because I had never witnessed in my own youth by my own parents. It's like a generational curse.

As I look at family and friends who are also saying what I said (some young, some have NO excuse), I hear the old familiar voice of the devil whispering: *Your unhappy, you deserve a different set of circumstances, walk away and it will make you happy, you made the wrong choice* on and so forth. It makes me almost sick. Families are disintegrating NOW at an alarming rate. When I was a child, my dysfunctional brood was the exception. Now we would be considered normal.

How did Satan steal our desire to BE a family? Is it because our country is so over-stimulated, over-fed, and self-absorbed that we no longer think we might need to sacrifice our own *happiness* (whatever that is), for our children?

I know in my early 20's, I didn't have any follow-through, or perseverance. I had never witnessed a marriage that lasted THROUGH perseverance in my childhood, so I lacked the ability to reason it through. If I HAD have seen my parents work through their issues and not just walk away, I wonder if that would have enabled me to keep pushing on?

The beauty of becoming a new Creation in Christ is; You get a second chance to learn how to do things right. If Christians would stop engaging in self-gratifying entertainment and go back to working together as a family (*Yes, I am speaking about video games, concerts, etc), and teaching children CONTENTMENT, we could actually produce a new generation of contented adults. This isn't revolutionary thinking, it's biblical. That's not to say that every source of media & electoronic entertainment is sinful, but over-indulgence in any entertainment is not healthy, physically, mentally, and most important: SPIRITUALLY.

I have many regrets, but also many joys. My children are forgiving and embracing. Our lives have been mended and we are all close. My ex-husband and I are even kind to each other. My new husband and I are happy and yes, even content, and when the going gets tough, the tough get on their knees and display humility and ask God to govern their marriage. We have learned through the horrible pain of regret to hang on, plough through, and count our blessings.

But I am perplexed. How do we pass this on to our youth??? How do we teach people who are discontented to become humble and appreciative, when they do not have the hindsight we do? How do we teach Mothers and Fathers to be self-less?

I sometimes think an Economic Depression would be good in the long run, because we would get off our high horses and learn, one way or the other how to appreciate the simplicity of family, the joy of unity, and stop looking for self-gratification. No more going to the movies on a whim, no new videos, no cable,... Just good old fashioned board games, family singings, home gardens, and hard work that teaches everyone to appreciate everything they have and the value of family.

Let me know what you think?
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