When does......

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by menageriekeeper, Jan 19, 2008.

  1. menageriekeeper

    menageriekeeper
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    help turn into enabling sin.

    A personal aqaintaince of mine called with a simple request tonight that I was happy to fulfill. It was a very minor thing, something she could very well have performed herself, so I asked her why she needed me to do so. That's the background, here's the problem:

    My friend has, at the moment, stayin in her home a minor child (think under 18) who has 2 and 1/2 children (meaning #3 is on the way). The young lady in question is not my friend's child but is related sort of to the family. Let's ignore for the moment that this young lady is not in the care of children's services herself and her guardianship is unclear.

    So, where does help stop in such situations. This 'child' has 3 children, yet can't figure out what it is she is doing wrong. Her connection to my friend's family it through her boyfriend who is once again sitting in a jail cell.

    Over and over, help has been provided, counseling given, Christ presented. When does our "help" simply become an aid to continued sin? At what point should these young people be made to deal with the consequence of their own actions?

    And if I seem a little aggravated by this, I am. My friend has children of her own who are seeing these young people(and others my friend seems to attract) continue in their sin. I am concerned that the example is being set for them that it doesn't matter what sort of trouble you get into someone will always be there to get you out.
     
  2. tinytim

    tinytim
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    I understand your frustration.. and there is no easy answer without knowing everything about the situation..

    I do want to say something to encourage you.. over the other children that are looking on...
    This may be the best lesson in abstinence their mother can give them...
    They will see this, and understand that sex before marriage will lead to problems the young lady is now having.

    God has placed her there for some reason.
     
  3. menageriekeeper

    menageriekeeper
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    The specifics aren't really the question/problem. This could be any of hundreds of cases you read about everyday in the newspapers.

    The real question is how long do you continue to provide (materially) for those who continue in blatant sin? Or maybe this says it better: How long do you stand between one who sins and the consequences of their sin without being seen as encouraging the sin?

    God allows consequences for sin to (hopefully) teach us not to sin. If we keep these consequences from happening, do we encourage the sin? If we provide childcare services, for the example young lady, without expecting her to use the time wisely, and we do this over and over, are we contributing to her sin by providing her the means with which to sin (in this case time to go out and get pregnant again)?
     
  4. Joe

    Joe
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    I don't know if anything I say can help, but you can glean what you can out of it.

    Everything is a trade off, I do this for you, and you do something to earn it. This needs to be repeated each and every time, nothing is a hand out. I will speak as if it is your situation-

    Give what you can, but they must learn to work for everything you give them. Nothing is free. It's easier to just give than to make them work, but they (Especially Mom of course) must learn to earn what they receive. Even if you only give them a little job like cleaning the bathroom, even though it is already clean, do so. Always make them work, right at that moment, take no rain checks for future work. Housecleaning is perfect.

    Absolutely require they attend church with you, and a support group at church during the week if possible. Or another church, but you will need to drop them off to ensure they actually enter the sanctuary.

    Call the County mental health, have them examined by a Doc. Pay the fee if you can afford it, many need anti-depressants to function properly. OR fight with mental health to get them in.

    Get services for the family, learn all about the free services it the area.

    Never allow illegal drugs or alcohol in the home, absolutely no drinking in moderation.

    Always buy what they need, never give actual money.

    Hug all of them frequently~Teach them all to pray together

    Pray for them.

    Make sure they know you will call the police if they are getting to out of hand, (Drugs, hanging with violent people etc) thus breaking the law. This is touchy, you can be viewed as a threat which you really don't want to be. This is why hugging them, and being their friend is so important. You are walking a line.

    Be their mommy or daddy- Tuck the Mother AND children into bed sometimes. Lay in bed with them and talk with them before they fall asleep (Mom & children) Hold their hands if it feels right.

    See if there is a program which will pay to have her tubes tied. It's very important to prevent more children from entering her world. Our state pays for a low income man to have a vasectomy, no proof of income required, so anyone can do it really. I don't know about free services for women as much.

    Make sure she is on birth control, force her get that contraception shot from the county Medical services every three months so she can't get pregnant and ruin another child's life. If she won't, she can't stay there.

    Sign up for low income housing, though it can take years to receive the call. Even if it seems they don't need it at the moment, even years later, things don't tend to change. They can always say no when the call comes.

    The goal is to get them a support system of people to lean on.

    Write the rules out, have them sign the paper, and tape a copy to the wall. Point to whatever number they screwed up on.

    They are grown up babies who need parents themselves. Be the whole gangs parents for a while. It isn't enabling if you set boundaries. This is what we did with our foster child. When mom took him back, we kept them both with us within our wings for a few years after, or imo, she would have went back to drugs. Now they are doing great, though she does get drunk sometimes.We considered both of them our children until she learned how to be a parent. We had to be her parent so she could learn.

    Talk lovingly and hug them all frequently. That is the easiest way to get most people to hear you.

    Sorry this is so general, yet it's just what we follow in every instance of this sort. Glean what you can
     
    #4 Joe, Jan 19, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 19, 2008
  5. bapmom

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    mk,

    I know what you mean. Especially us ladies, we are always trying to nurture and protect and often we are protecting someone against the God-given consequence of their sin. I think there are times we protect to the point where it's detrimental in the long run.

    I guess the line would probably be different in each case......

    I think the help should be given when the person is willing to reach out and turn their life around.....turn themselves over to God.

    In your example here I wouldn't be giving her any childcare unless it were for time to go to a job. And it would most likely not be free - I'd expect some sort of payment. But there'd be no childcare for her to go out and party.....at least not from me. If she were partying she'd be out of my house, too.

    No one is going to be convinced to turn their life over to God just by me helping them watch their kids while they go party and do whatever. Now if God gets hold of them, and they turn to me because they have no one else, and they need help getting back on their feet - because they realize their need - I'm all for it.


    I guess what I need to see is the desire to do what's right. Enabling sin is when we let ourselves get taken advantage of in a misguided effort to remain - I don't know - their friends? I'll be a friend, they can call, talk to me, I'll take them to church, tell them about Christ, show them Christ. But Jesus didn't just hang out with them and be "buddies".....ya know?.....sinners came to Him in the effort to get right and He accepted them all....yay for all of us! Right?

    When they came to Him He gave them food, He healed them, He cleansed them. But when they wanted to do their own thing and live wicked, He left that alone. He allowed them to make their mistakes, and deal with the consequences.

    It's hard, especially with children involved. I know.
     
  6. donnA

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    Whatever a person decides to do they have to make sure they do not leave children hungry and homeless.
     
  7. Aaron

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    You don't even begin. Beyond a cloak and something to eat, unless they behave themselves they don't get to come under your roof. That should be made perfectly clear from the git go.
     
  8. tinytim

    tinytim
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    That would be ideal, but sometimes it is not as cut and dry...
    especially when children (little innocent children) are involved..

    I like your advice.. but I would combine it with all the above advice also...

    I found this in my illustrations....
    In Tom Bodett's (Of Motel 6 fame) book, “As Far As You Can Go Without a Passport,” he tells about his Grandma Hatty.

    Tom’s mother grew up during the Depression, working hard at the Dairy that his Grandma and Grandpa owned….They lived near the train tracks, and because it was the Depression, hoboes regularly came by looking for handouts as they made their way to nowhere in particular….Grandma Hatty was glad to share what little they had, but she always made sure the “bums” as-she-called-them washed milk cans, or shoveled snow, or did something helpful to earn their meal.

    Apparently, Hatty’s family got to be pretty popular on the hobo circuit.

    In fact, the hoboes had a practice of scratching a white X with chalk on the gateposts of those houses where a guy could get a handout.

    It was supposed to be a secret sign, but Grandma Hatty knew it was there.

    She never bothered with that mark, except once.

    It was the Sunday before Christmas, and on the way in from church, Hatty noticed that a rainstorm the day before had washed the white mark off the post out front….It turned cold right away, and the snow piled up during the afternoon.

    Grandma and Grandpa sat in the front room watching hoboes trudge past the house, but none of them were stopping….Suddenly, it hit her: The white X was gone….Now, some people might’ve been glad to have a little peace and quiet on the Sunday before Christmas, but not Grandma Hatty.

    She slipped on her overcoat, hiked out to the gate, and put a huge white X on the post that nobody could possibly miss.

    Tom Bodett ended his story by saying, “I don’t know what all this means except that in this hard-hearted world we live in, we should all have a gatepost out front, and…go out and put a great big white X on that thing.” [As Far As You Can Go Without a Passport, Tom Bodett, Addison-Wesley Pub. Co., 1985, pp. 47-50]
     
  9. donnA

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    We know the boyfriend is suffering consequences because he's in jail isn't he?
    The minor girl/mother, is she still doing whatever they've been doing ( drugs, etc)? I don't think we have enough in the op to tell.
    Christ has been presented to her yes, but should she be punished for not accepting? Do we not help people just because they haven't been saved yet?
    One thing the children are learning is grace, showing God's grace to others in trying to help them. If this situation is handled correctly those children can learn a lot of good.
    We just don't know enough to say what should be done.
     
  10. menageriekeeper

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    Well I must say, my friend is probably doing most of what is suggested, except this from Joe's post: they must learn to work for everything you give them. Nothing is free.

    On this, she tells them they must ______ but rarely holds them to it. I'm afraid in some of the cases this probably perpetuates what was going on in their own homes long before my friend ever got involved. I will suggest that she try some of your suggestions.

    The boyfriend has a whole story of his own. Suffice it to say if he'd been mine, I would've operating on the principal of "I brought you into the world and I will take you out." This boy did have a rough time in his early years, but from the time he was around 8 he was raised in a Christian home, carted hither and yon to whatever sport was in season and taught how to work for a living. He is not skill-less. He is rebellious. He had rather steal than work though he is not an addict (doesn't mind using occasionally, but that isn't the base for his problem). So his folks (meaning parents and others close to him) bail him out, take him home, find him work and before he even comes to trial he's been arrested again. Sometimes it's theft, sometimes assault (he likes to fight) and this time I didn't even ask. It remains to be seen how long he stays in jail this time as there is a large extended family he can whine to for help all the while having some excuse for his behavior. This pattern has gone on for 2-3 years now.

    This is why I asked, how long does one provide for such as this without contributing to their sin.

    As for the girls own family, I really don't know. My friend says she doesn't have any "here". How far off 'not here' is anyone's guess. Mine is that what little she has here doesn't want her. :( However, her own rebelliion must have been going on for sometime as her oldest is over two years old.

    Evidently, I've lived a sheltered life. Having one baby at 17 would have overwhelmed me, if my parents had let me live. I can't imagine having 2 and one on the way at that age. At the very least I'd have figured out what was causing them.

    The idea of continuing on and on in the face of consequences that were clearly my own fault without trying to change enough to stop the consequences, utterly amazes me. But perhaps, I've been saved to long to understand the temptation of the activities these young people participate in.
     
  11. donnA

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    Sinful people come in all shapes sizes colors and ages, and you can't expect any of them to be perfect, even we aren't perfect as christians. Perhaps your friend is doing what she believes God would have her do. And what if she is, is telling her to stop a bad thing? We can't possibly know what God has put on anothers heart to do.
     
  12. bapmom

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    I think donnA's right in this situation with your friend, MK.....we really can't decide what God has told her to do in the situation. If it were happening to you, I mean if you were in the position to be the one offering the aid, perhaps God would lead you to do the same.

    You mentioned one thing though, about the boyfriend - and I know that isn't really up to you either - but I think that speaks to the issue you're trying to discuss.

    When a person just won't change why do we bail them out of jail? I say let him stay there until trial since he's obviously not getting enough of a consequence.
     
  13. donnA

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    agree about the boyfriend.
     
  14. Karen

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    Worth repeating.
     

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