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Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Part 3: I Want a Redo

I want a redo. I want to start over. It’s not ok that I keep losing my temper. I know you are struggling with bullies at school. I don’t want you to worry about being bullied at home. It is going to start with your mother and I. And all of us need to do a better job of being patient with one another. When one of us is upset or hurt or tired or frustrated, the rest of us need to be patient. If you are the one who is hurt or upset, separate yourself and take some time to think and pray. Take a breath, read the Bible, ask to talk to someone, listen to some encouraging music. Get refreshed. The rest of us need to give you time and some space and help you however we can. Not respond in anger and add fuel to the fire.

I am not good. I figured that one out. Only God is good. I get it. I had confessed my sin to God. I had confessed my sin to Ethan and I made a plan, listening to him and taking him on a special trip. Now what? How do I communicate to Ethan and the rest of the family that things are going to be different?


Do you remember being on the playground and hearing someone ask for a redo? Whether it was a swing that missed the ball or someone that interfered with the play, they felt they needed a redo, to try again. And, they knew if you just gave them another chance that they could do better.

You may need a redo with your child. After you’ve repented and made a plan to change the relationship for the better. Ask your child for a redo. “I’d really like to start over, to try again.”

However they respond, with grace and hope or anger and spite, you can’t control that. It may not be what you had hoped for, but don’t give up hoping. Prepare your plan, work it out, and follow through with it. Whatever you do, don’t react negatively to their response. Let them see that you are determined to trust God and follow through with your part of the relationship regardless of whether they do their part.

If you have other children and they have been touched by the rift between you, include them in the conversation as much as seems appropriate. Even if they are much younger, they probably still feel the tension and know that something is wrong. Let them see that you know something is wrong too and want to fix it.

Be careful not to ask for a redo too early. If you do this before you repent or make any changes, before the ball of change is rolling, you set yourself up for failure. The first time you blow it, they will think and probably say, “You haven’t changed! Who do you think you’re kidding!” They will think that you are all words and no action.

This “redo” is about words, though. It is about putting words to the actions that you have taken. Explain to your child that you know you have made mistakes in the past, but now you are beginning to see how you can change and you want them to know why.

You want them to be a part of the change.
You want them!
You want to have a relationship with them!

Ask for a redo once your actions have started to signal to them that things are changing.

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