How To Raise Kids Without Raising Your Blood Pressure
Great Marriages Make Great Kids
Classic mistakes most married parents make.
Dad not involved. Result: Wife is exhausted & resentful, feels abandoned, kids feel rejected and will develop low self-esteem. Solution: Stop being selfish, make time for each child on a regular basis, ask your wife what you can do as a dad to help.
Moms too focused on the kids. Result: Husband feels rejected, becomes resentful and bitter, your marriage is dead, your kids live in a fantasy world thinking life is all about them. Solution: Carve out daily time with your husband giving your husband the best or your attention and energy, ask your husband what his needs are and work on meeting them, make sure you are meeting his sexual needs, learn to tell your kids NO.
Both parents too focused on the kids. Result: You are parents not really a couple anymore, you have zero intimacy with your mate, you are teaching your kids how to have a dead marriage. Solution: Start having private time meeting at least 3-4 times a week, talk about anything but the kids, go on a date once a week, hold hands.
Stepparents doing the discipline. Result: Resentment and resistance in the child, you disrespect your spouse’s right to discipline her own child. Solution: Relax and realize it’s not your job to discipline your stepchildren, provide full input on discipline, but then allow them to do the discipline.
One parent in charge.
Fighting in front of the kids.
The hero parent.
Sermon Video Transcription
James Greer: 00:00 Whoo. Let’s welcome Alexandria Campus, Amen? Hey, you know, sometimes you just kind of walk in and sometimes you can feel this like a kind of almost an oppression. Oppression is different than depression. Depression is kind of a chemical imbalance. Oppression can be a spiritual oppression. It’s kind of a holding down, you know. And one of the things you do when you get oppressed, you’ve just got to say, well, let’s give thanks to the Lord because he’s good. And it says, let the redeemed of the Lord say so. And one of the things I want to do is say that God has really blessed us in some great ways. I mean, Wednesday night I was walking around, do you all know that we had a hundred youth just on fire for God, Wednesday night, Amen? Yeah. Amen?
James Greer: 00:42 And Sunday morning if you walked around up there, we have between a hundred a hundred about 150 babies and kids just learning about Jesus. Thursday night there was a hundred people in celebrate recovery. That’s hurts, habits and hang-ups. We had almost a thousand people in worship. Wednesday night we had things like Princess Warriors, Revelations study, divorce support group, Grief support, which we really need. Mothers of addiction, kingdom man, financial Core is starting. Yoga, fitness, people getting baptized every Sunday.
James Greer: 01:32 But, then I want to tell you about something that happened. Anna was a girl that joined our church on August 18th. I knew her from years ago, hadn’t seen her in probably five, six years. The last two months she started coming. On August 18th she walked up and handed me a note. She said, I want to join the church. And I could have just walk back and said no, don’t do that. Let’s pray and I sent her to the back and she filled out the information. On August 24th, she took her life. So here on the 18th, she’d been coming for about a month and a half, and the 24th she took her life. And there’s just too much of that going on. So what I’m finding out is that people come to church because they have a need. And maybe sometimes that needs not being met. So maybe we’re not preaching that particular Sunday on that need or what’s going on in your life. But if you have that kind of need, you need to let somebody know. If you’re hurting that bad, let somebody pray with you. We do have a God that can meet your needs. Maybe it’s just not that Sunday. Maybe it’s not that moment, but I don’t think there’s anything too difficult for the Lord.
James Greer: 02:17 In fact, I believe in Philippians 4:19 it says, that my God shall supply all your needs according to his riches and glory. I think that means all your needs. I don’t know what your need is here today. Might be financial, it might be emotional, it might be spiritual. But I can tell you it might not be today, but I can tell you. We have a God that can meet your needs. So I want to encourage you not to give up and not to give in, but to keep going forward. Amen? Jeremiah 32:27 says, behold I am the Lord, the God of all flesh. There’s absolutely nothing too hard for God. I believe in all my heart, there’s absolutely nothing too hard. I believe there’s no situation too bad and there’s nothing that he will not get you through if you will allow him.
James Greer: 03:07 Matthew 19 says, and Jesus said, with men it is impossible, with God there’s absolutely nothing impossible. Men are going to disappoint you. People are going to discourage you. And one of the things that happens if we start putting our faith in people and in our jobs, and we get discouraged and we want to give up. And God doesn’t want us to put our faith in people. He wants us to put them in God. He doesn’t want us to put them in church. He didn’t want us put them in people, (inaudible)I don’t stand in the wisdom of man, but in the power of God. There was a situation, there was this guy that was so discouraged because of his son, who had so many problems. And in Matthew 17 it says, and he came with a multitude and a man with him and he kneel down before Jesus and said, have mercy on my son. For he has seizures and he suffering, and he falls into fires and into the water. And he said, I brought him to your disciples. He said, I brought him. It’s like I brought him to church and they couldn’t do anything about it. And see, sometimes I think there’s people, they’re coming to church and maybe they’re marriage is falling apart, their finances are falling apart, their children are falling apart. Fathers say, man, I tried church and nothing happened. That can happen. And that’s what this man felt. And he said, I tried that and nothing happened and they couldn’t cure him.
James Greer: 04:11 And maybe that’s what happens sometimes, you’re coming to church. Maybe it’s your marriage, maybe it’s a situation, maybe it’s finances. Maybe something’s going on in your life. And you said but, I’ve tried church. Well, let’s try Jesus. And Jesus answered, oh faithless, perverse generation. He said, you know, how long shall I be with you? And how long shall I bear you? And he said, bring him to me. He said, I’m going to change the situation. And Jesus rebuked the devil. And you know, when Jesus rebuked the devil, the devil always has to obey Jesus. And it came out of him and the child was cured from that very hour. And this is what happened. The disciples came to Jesus privately and say, why couldn’t we cast them out? Have you ever come to church? And you said, man, why couldn’t something happen in my life? Why couldn’t it change? Why couldn’t I be delivered? Why couldn’t I leave different? And Jesus said, because of your unbelief, assuredly I say unto you, if you had the faith of the grain of a mustard seed you could say, sometimes we need to speak our faith out, move from here to there and it should be moved. Why? There’s nothing impossible for what? For you. Nothing. However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting. Sometimes it’s not going to be instantaneous.
James Greer: 05:36 Sometimes you’ve got to come to church and you can have unbelievable, impossible problem in your life. And you’ll say, you know, the church didn’t help. The pastor didn’t help. The people didn’t help. But, Jesus can help. Sometimes it may not be instantaneous, but I believe there’s nothing too hard for God. Sometimes maybe you have to come together. Maybe there’s sometimes there has to be people praying with you. Sometimes you’ve got people fasting with you, but God will either remove the problem or he’ll give you the strength to go through the problem. Amen? So whatever the problem is, don’t give up. Amen? And so I just feel like we’ve got to get to the point that we tell everybody don’t give up. Don’t give up.
James Greer: 06:14 I believe Romans 8:28 with all my heart. I really do. I believe that all things can work together for good to those who love the Lord. I really do. Those are called his purpose. I don’t know what you’re going through. I think God can take the worst things in our lives and I believe he can turn it around to something good. And maybe you’re going through something terrible, maybe you did something terrible. I believe God, even maybe it’s your own fault that you did it. I think God could still take it and turn it around to something good.
James Greer: 06:44 I believe that we need to be a church that is offering hope to the hopeless. I believe you need to be able to say that I did something I shouldn’t have done, and we need to be say we, sorry, we’re not agreeing with your sin, but we believe that God can help you. I believe that you’ve got to believe that. I don’t know what’s going on in your life, but I believe that God wants you to know that. I know that. I know, I know. I’ve been around for years. I know that God can turn it around. I’ve seen good times and I’ve seen bad times. I’ve seen that absolutely there’s nothing too hard for God. I believe in Genesis 50:20 that bad things can happen to good people. I know what Genesis 50:20 means. It means, there’s a good person and a lot of bad things happened to them. And at the end, towards the end of his life, you said, you meant it for evil against me, but God meant it for good. And bad things happen to good people and God said, Hey, I’ll still turn our ever some of the good. So what I want to tell you about the whole message. It’s not today’s message, it’s not about marriage, it’s about life. And that God has a hope for you and no matter what’s going on in your life, it can get better and don’t give up on life. Amen?
James Greer: 07:50 So what I want to tell you about the whole message. It’s not today’s message, it’s not about marriage, it’s about life. And that God has a hope for you and no matter what’s going on in your life, it can get better and don’t give up on life. Amen? Though the message today is not going to be about marriage. I just really don’t want to get off on that without telling you whether it’s your marriage, whether it’s your kids, whether it’s your job, it can be okay. Don’t give up.
James Greer: 08:08 So many couples are having so many problems. One of the reasons they have so many problems is because we’re looking for the other person to satisfy us. We’re looking for contentment. We’re looking for happiness. We’re looking in joy, we’re looking in the other person. We have too many expectations on our mates. And we need to lower the expectations on our mate maybe, and raise expectations on ourselves even if we don’t want to. The higher the expectations you have on them, on your mate, the less happiness you’re going to have in your life. You know what? You want to raise expectations? Raise them on yourself and less than them on your mate and the happier you’ll be in life. I’m not saying be irresponsible, but we have the wrong expectations so many times on other people other than ourselves. See, the main purpose for marriage in essence was not that simply be satisfied, but it’s to sharpen each other. It’s to make us a better person.
James Greer: 09:04 It was when Matthew 19:5 said, for this reason, a man shall leave his father and mother and the two shall become one flesh and there shall no longer be two but one. Therefore, what God joined together let no man put us under. In other words, I become a better person because of my wife, Debbie. I’m a better father, I’m a better parent, I’m a better husband. My purpose is not to satisfy me, but it’s to help me be a better person, a better father, a better preacher. So one of the reasons you get married is because the two, they become one and then make the other person becoming a better person, not just to satisfy that person. The two become one Ecclesiastes says, two’s better than one. It says, one falls, they have companion to lift them up. One warms the other, three cores better. The three chord is Jesus Christ. Spiritual growth is the only thing that guarantees that light’s going to get better.
James Greer: 09:50 Marriage is not simply make you happy and that it can make you holy, not holier than now, but a better person. There’s nobody knows you like your mate. There’s nobody knows your sins in your life like your mate. And if you will allow them, they can tell you where you can get better and how you can get better. Not as they try to be holier than now, but if you will let them. See the two become one, a better person, because they are two that are becoming one. They’re not just being satisfied, they’re shaping your life. You don’t get married just to have lust. You get married to have love. Lust is you just always want your own satisfaction. And the world is so messed up. And so they lustfully get married, and they think it’s their job to get satisfied from their mate. Less focuses on getting, instead of giving. Where love is always focused on giving to the other person.
James Greer: 11:01 No one can really get satisfied without a right relationship with Jesus Christ. When you say Matthew 6:33 it’s the central theme of life. Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and his righteousness and everything else should be added unto you. You’ve got to come to the point in your life that Jesus Christ is the only ultimate source in your life to meet every single need. And everything else in your life is nothing but a conduit for Christ, or you’ll never be happy. And everybody else is trying to find happiness and everything else. And once you find out that he’s your ultimate source, you’ve got to get your finances right. Where your treasure is, your life’s going to be. And you’ve got to learn to tithe 10%, save 10%, live off 80%. And get your life straightened out. And only then can we get into what people fight about.
James Greer: 11:54 It’s been a tough week. It’s been an emotional week. It’s not another week. I don’t want to go through the same week after week after week. And uh, so the message doesn’t seem too relevant to me. We’ll walk through it, but the relevance is what I’ve already preached. So, I want you to keep going and not giving up. I’ll tell you some of the things they fight about and solve problems in marriages, but that’s not it. I’ve already preached the message. The classic thing is dads aren’t involved. We get involved, we get our self-worth from work. I did, and most men do, except for the lazy ones.
James Greer: 12:39 So, we work and we say we bring our check home when we get our self-identity from our jobs. And God created us that way. In the very beginning we were created and we’re putting the garden to work and that’s where we got our identity. But if you’re not careful, we get our identity from that. And we forget that. Then he said, that didn’t satisfy. So he gave us a wife, and only then where we really satisfied. So if we’re not careful, we, we began to work and then we’d take our work and we take our hobbies and some people’s hobbies, TV and sports, and it results in the wife doing everything, fixing the meals, doing the play time, doing the transportation. She’s then exhausted. She’s then resentful, she feels left out. Kids feel rejected. And men have to rethink it.
James Greer: 13:28 And I didn’t do a good job at it. But you know, though we may get our self-worth from our job, the ultimate self-worth is from Christ. We’ve got to get off our butts, get involved in our family, do our part, spend time with the kids. Remember this, it’s always easier to spend more time with one kid than it is to another. Fight the pull. We have a natural pull to go with one child than the other, because we have natural instincts with them. Fight the pull. Ask your wife what you can do to help. Wives be careful, don’t say, let me do the preaching. Don’t go home and say, see what he said. You’re doing that. And then your husband will be won by the words you don’t say not by the words you do say. Moms be careful you don’t focus too much on your kids. Don’t try to be super mom and hardly take care of your husband. He wants you to be, he wants to be number one in your life. Don’t let your kids take all your time and your energy and you and I don’t have anything left for your husband and he feels like he’s just getting leftovers. Don’t make him feel rejected and resentful. Don’t lead it to a dead end.
James Greer: 14:44 Take care of him as well. Give him your attention. Take care of your husband physically, emotionally, and sexually. God has a creative order for marriage, he always had. And what happens is when we don’t understand God’s created order for anything, it gets out of order. And God always had a creative order. And God said it in the very beginning. He set it up. In Ephesians 5 he said, wives submit to your husbands as unto the Lord? Husbands, the head of the wife, as is Christ. It’s always been. Me our head is to be Christ. Our focus is always to be Christ is to be the head of the husband. He’s supposed to be leading the home, not demanding home, but leading the home. It’s always been God the man, the woman, the children. And the wives here and God’s here. I’m in here, and the woman’s here and God’s here. The closer you get to God, the closer you will always get each other. God just created that way. And he wants it to be that way and he wants it to be a certain way.
James Greer: 15:51 And then, the third mistake is both parents just focus on the kids. And you know they spend all their time, all their energy, all their money just on the kids. The problem is one day the kids grow up and they’re gone. You’re not sweethearts, you’re just parents. You have nothing in common, no place to go, nothing to talk about. So marriage is dead. You were just roommates. That wasn’t the deal. God puts you together before you ever had kids.
James Greer: 16:19 Then step parents. Today we probably have as many step parents as we do parents together. Be careful. Step parents trying to discipline their step kids. Of course, it depends on the age of course, but it brings resentment. If you’re not the parent, the bell goes off and says, you’re not my parent. Brings resentment even with the spouse. Relax it’s not your job. Give full input, but at a certain age, especially when they’re older, let the parents do the parenting and the discipline. Then it’s the one parent in charge. This is the biggie today. One parent makes all the decisions. Now they act like they’re taking the input from the other, but they’re really not. They’ve already made up their mind. It’s my way or the highway. And so they listen, but they really don’t. I know what’s best and so what happens is it’s creating anger and frustration in their spouse. And many times in their kids, too.
James Greer: 17:17 It’s disregard and disrespect for the other spouse. The one that’s making all the decisions is making bad decisions because they don’t listen. Then they blame the other one, but it’s supposed to be the two become one, one thought, one hope, not just one. They need to be made together as many as possible. Make them ahead of time and then when you get together, when both people had full input and you reach an impasse, let the husband make the final decision. He doesn’t want to but, force him to. Make him grow up. Let him be the man of the house, then it won’t always be right, but if you made them all time, it wouldn’t be right either. Somebody has got to sooner or later make a decision, and he doesn’t always make it. Man, if you’re doing it right, and that won’t happen very often, but if it never happens, it’s out of balance too. Let it happen. Let it become natural. There’s nothing wrong with it. It will happen.
James Greer: 18:27 You remember this when you don’t know God’s order, you will have disorder. The sixth is fighting in front of the kids. You showcase your thoughts, your feelings, your personal issues out in front of the kids. If you’re a step parent and you’re fighting then you’ll choose, the kid will automatically defend the other parent, even if you’re doing all the work. It messes with their self-esteem and security. It damages respect for both parties. The kids will pick up on what you say and they’ll manipulate you to get their ways. Start doing your conflict in private more. Remember who’s the parent and act like it. Ask for wisdom.
James Greer: 19:21 The seventh is the hero mentality of a parent. One wants to be the hero of the family. They want to avoid conflict. They want to try to give the child everything they can. Let’s have the good times roll. Let’s not fight at any cost. The problem is that’s not true. They’ll always come a time, then you can’t do that and it’ll backfire on you. And they’ll say, why are you acting like that? Well I can’t give you what I’ve always done. I can’t always say yes. So, they become entitled and then they want everybody else to do the same thing and they can’t. So, you have to finally get a backbone. You have to say no. You make parents decisions together as a husband and spouse and you stick to it. Many times you’ll come to the point because you’re sticking to it. And now you’re saying, hey, you can’t always go and you have to wait. And sometimes your kids, they finally say, well, you know, I really don’t like what you’re doing. I don’t like the way you’re doing. Congratulations. You’ve became a parent. You finally did what you’re supposed to do. Being a parent is tough. Being in a marriage tough. Having a great marriage is tough. Without God, it’s impossible.
James Greer: 20:25 What I want our church to do is just keep going forward. I want us to keep trying to help people, keep helping marriages, keep helping people that are hurting. Having a great marriage makes great kids. I think it’s trying to have a good marriage. Just do the best you can. Nobody’s got a perfect marriage. Nobody’s got a perfect life. I think we mess up all the time. I think you just get up and you start trying over again. I think we become more open and more honest. The more we’re hurt and more we’re broken. I think we’ve become a church that’s uh, knows that people can say they’re hurting, they can still come. I think it’s impossible to have a great marriage without having a great God in the middle of that marriage. I think what you do is you go through your bulletin and then you just pick one or two of these areas and work on them. You don’t try to work on all of them. Uh, don’t think you’ve got it together and the other one doesn’t. Nobody has it together. Nobody has all these together. Nobody does them all right. Nobody has all of their marriages together. Nobody’s got all their life together. It’s just a broken world and we’re broken people trying to raise broken kids.
James Greer: 22:00 The real reason we fight is usually because we’re selfish. James 4:1 says, why do you fight and why you argue? And it is mainly because of selfish desires. You just want your way. You’ve got to learn to put God first. Mate second, kids third. I do believe with all my heart, there’s no need too big that God can’t meet. Would you stand and let’s pray.
James Greer: 22:48 Father, you are a great God. I do know there’s absolutely nothing too hard for you. Hey God, for those that are hurting, I pray you’d comfort them. Those that feel helpless. I pray you give them help. Give them hope. God, those that don’t know you, man, they need to come to know you because you are the only one that can give hope. Those that feel that they need comfort, you’d comfort them. God, for those who have never followed through in public baptism, maybe today’s the day. And maybe those want to join the church, today would be the day to join. That God, maybe those just need to come and pray and feel your presence. God, what a day that would be today. Your hope and comfort. Peace, your power, your presence. God you’re just a great God. Whatever needs to be met. God, church can’t do it. I can’t do it. And God, there’s absolutely nothing too hard for you. Let them put their hope and confidence in you. It’s in Christ’s name we pray. Amen.
Recorded in Pineville, Louisiana.