Forgiveness and Faith in Parenting
Kia Stephens shed light on bridging the generational gap
In a recent interview on Family Life Radio, Kia Stephens, author of “Overcoming Father Wounds: Exchanging Your Pain for God’s Perfect Love,” shared her insights on the impact of generational differences on parenting and the healing journey from “father wounds.” Kia emphasized the importance of acknowledging the changing approach to therapy and mental health, as well as the role of forgiveness in finding healing.
The Changing Approach to Therapy and Mental Health
Kia pointed out that today’s generation is more open to therapy and mental health support. She says, “We’re talking about it openly on podcasts and blogs and Facebook and Instagram. We’re free with the fact that we need therapy, Jesus and coffee.” In contrast, previous generations were less likely to seek help and openly discuss their mental health struggles. This generational difference has had a significant impact on the way people parent their children and their understanding of mental well-being.
Parenting with the Knowledge and Resources Available
Kia acknowledges that parents often do the best they can with the knowledge they have at the time. She says about her own parents, “They did the best they could. I’m not excusing it, I’m not dismissing it. I’m not denying that I’m wounded. I’m saying they did the best that they could with the knowledge that they had.” Understanding the generational impact on parenting styles and outcomes can help us find healing and forgiveness.
Healing from “Father Wounds” as a Unique Journey
Kia highlights that healing from “father wounds” is not a one-size-fits-all process. Different individuals will have unique experiences and will need to navigate their own paths towards healing. It is essential to recognize the importance of forgiveness, surrendering to God and seeking guidance in this journey.
Forgiveness’s Role in Healing
According to Kia, forgiveness is central to the healing process. She defines it as “relinquishing our right to hold another person responsible for the wrong that they’ve done to us.” Ephesians 4:31-32 encourages you to “Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior. Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you” (NLT).
Kia has found turning to God for guidance helps during the healing process, saying, “But God, I need you to help my mind and my heart to follow suit. I need you to do a work in me.”
Practical Steps to Navigate Relationships with Parents Who Have Caused Pain
Kia provides examples of tailored approaches based on individual circumstances when dealing with a parent who has caused pain. She suggests a range of options, including limited contact, such as sending a card or calling on special occasions, to regular meetings in public places. The crucial aspect is to seek the Lord’s guidance in determining the best approach for one’s unique situation.
Your Path to Complete Healing
Kia said, “I definitely think [overcoming father wounds] involves acknowledging, it involves forgiving, and it involves a surrendering and a clinging to God for complete and total healing.”
You have a promise from God of His support and strength during your healing journey.
“Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand” (Isaiah 41:10 NLT).
As you seek to heal from “father wounds” or other emotional pain, it’s important to remember that our path to healing will be unique to our own experiences. You must also remain open to God’s guidance in navigating your relationships with those who have caused you pain. It may involve setting boundaries or taking practical steps to protect your mental and emotional well-being. As you on God’s strength and wisdom, you can find the best approach for your unique situation.
Kia Stephens is a wife and mom of two who is passionate about helping women know God as Father. For this reason, she created The Father Swap Blog to help women exchange their father wounds for the love of God the Father. Kia is also the founder of Entrusted Women, which she created to equip Christian women communicators of color. In addition to these ministries, Kia faithfully serves in Bible Study Fellowship and her local church in Atlanta, Georgia. When Kia is not writing or serving women, she enjoys spending quality time with her family and friends. Kia released her first book, Overcoming Father Wounds, on March 7, 2023. Kiastephens.com
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