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Changing Directions and Breaking Chains

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Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Changing Directions and Breaking Chains

I'm four weeks into Breaking Free, by Beth Moore. It's amazing to say the least, and this past week of study has really rocked my world! The topic was generational sin.

There is absolutely no way I could cram all of my thoughts on this study into one post, but this morning I'm up at 4:00AM thinking about how profound what I'm learning this week is.

We all have things about us that are products of how we were raised.

Before I go on I would like to start by saying that I love my parents, and if I needed help right now, they would be there for me. There were many positives about my childhood. They had five kids, and did the best they could. That being said, there is a laundry list of things I want to do differently for my kids. But, I'm learning that bashing them or the way they parented isn't going to get me anywhere.

There are so many things about myself that I don't like that are a result of the environment I was raised in. How many of those qualities or behaviors do I accept as my "personality", due to my parents or my childhood? Lots! I found this quote from the study to be profound.

"We tend to think of hand-me-down baggage as part of who we are rather than how we're bound. In many cases, we grew up with these chains so they feel completely natural. We consider them part of our personalities rather than a yoke squeezing abundant life out of us." ~ Beth Moore, Breaking Free

Here's a an example. I grew up in a household that argued, yelled, cussed, screamed, and fought like crazy. My parents argued, the kids argued, and the house was generally ten octaves above the average house every day. It was loud, chaotic, and had a negative vibe a lot of the days because of it.

Even though this is something I hated about my household growing up, I yell all the time here. I'm argumentative at times, and my temper is pretty short. If I'm having a bad day, it doesn't take a whole lot to set me off down the yelling and screaming path. My children have witnessed arguments between my husband and I, and I'm usually the one to keep it going when I should calm down and wait for a more appropriate time to talk to hubs. I have a hard time finding self control when I'm all fired up. It's hard for me to admit this, but it's true. Have I accepted this behavior in myself as my personality? Accept is a hard word. I don't like this about me, but I haven't changed it. I often find myself making excuses for this behavior by saying things like "It's so hard, because this is the way I was raised".

There's more about my past, me today, and the me of my future that is a result of past generations that I DO NOT want to pass down to my own children. The yelling has already reared it's head in them at times, and I'm heartbroken over it. I already find myself saying things like, "Oh, he's just like me. He has to be right all the time." This is something I grew up hearing about myself!

Here's another example...premarital sex. I was the youngest of four girls. My oldest sisters are six years my senior. When I was 10 yrs., they were on birth control with steady boyfriends who were allowed to sleep over. By the time I was old enough for boyfriends, there was no talk about sex. It was just understood that I knew it all because I was the youngest of four sexually active daughters. Ugh! I had a very warped view of sex, love, and realtionships because of this. I made the mistake of going down the path of casual sex, and crappy relationships, with crappy people. I don't want that for my boys!

There's tons more, but this is a post not a book. The list that God has opened my eyes to this week is too long(and some too personal) to share, even for an honest blogger. However, I've learned I can break the chains for my children, thier children, and their grandchildren, and thousands of my decendants after I'm gone from this earth!

"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation, the old has gone, the new has come!"
~2 Corinthians 5:17

I am a new creation in Christ! I don't have to settle for the me I was going to be. I can be the me God had planned for me!

"So many people yearn to be part of something significant. Something important. We want to make useful contributions to society. We look at people who do and we're anvious, yet do we realize what kind of contribution we could make in our own family lines? I can't think of anyone to whom I'd want my life to be a blessing more than my children's children and their children's children. Ten generations later our names might be forgotten, but one day in heaven I beleive they'll get to meet the link that changed the direction of the chain. Sometimes we're willing to criticize what happened before us, but are we willing to take the challenge of positively affecting those after us? The little slice of time God offers each generation is a trust." ~Beth Moore, Breaking Free

With God's help, I'm changing directions and breaking chains!




At October 6, 2010 at 9:34 AM , Blogger Jenn said...

Wow...I did the study several years ago...and it is amazing. Even more amazing are the things that you are seeing that are not positive that you want to change. And that's awesome. I think one of the greatest things about our God is that once we have become Christians, we get to "start over"...we can lay that baggage from our old past down and move forward. Of course, this is always easier said than done, but it is through this renewing that we can start over.

Trust me...the patterns you are seeing in your current life can be broken. My mom grew up in a household where her parents did not go to church, drank A LOT and were abusive to their children. My childhood was nothing like hers. I think when she finally got out of that and married my dad, she realized that wasn't what she wanted. There were some things that she carried with her and some things that she thought were "normal" that aren't. She has been able to break those chains, though and it's all by the grace of God.

Sorry - you could write a book...and I could write a short novel back on this! :) I just really enjoyed your post!

At October 6, 2010 at 10:00 AM , Blogger Shell said...

This sounds like a very freeing study. There are somethings that I do that I know are a result of how I grew up...and some that I do purposely to be the opposite of how I grew up.

At October 6, 2010 at 11:56 AM , Blogger Mommie Daze said...

I love Beth Moore. Her insight is just so incredible.

At October 6, 2010 at 12:03 PM , Blogger MommaKiss said...

Eye opening, hon. This sounds like something that can only bring good.

At October 6, 2010 at 12:14 PM , Blogger Reagan said...

Breaking Free was a tremendous study and good for you for working through it. The generational sin stuff was heavy but I am glad that through prayerful insight, you are able to break free!

Thanks for sharing you thoughts. Bravo!

At October 6, 2010 at 1:23 PM , Blogger Grace Wheeler said...

Great post! I did that study a few years ago and though it was exhausting to go through, it was so worth it! Breaking those chains is making you into everything your Creator intends for you to become and someday be!

I'm thankful he's bringing us to completion and that he isn't through with us!!

(visiting from Pour out Your Heart)

At October 6, 2010 at 7:13 PM , Blogger Diane said...

It is very easy for us to fall into the pattern that our parents set and often takes a lot of insight and courage to break away from those that are not healthy. Sounds like an awesome study. Thanks for sharing!

At October 6, 2010 at 8:35 PM , Blogger Jessica said...

It's so true. And we can prevent things from being passed to our children if we accept the victory that Christ has won for us.

My husband and I were both keenly aware of this (our engagement was slightly saddened by an adulterous relationship in this family that broke up a 25 year marriage) and were committed to ending generational sins on both sides of our family trees.

It's a good reminder to not blame our childhoods. Once we're adults we get to make our own decisions.

At October 7, 2010 at 7:47 AM , Blogger Jennifer said...

Stopping by from Surrender. Congratulations on your award! I'm following, and can't wait to read more!

Jennifer @

At October 11, 2010 at 10:01 AM , Blogger Charlotte (Life's a Charm!) said...

just passing by!
i just want to say - good luck in 'changing direction and breaking chains'. I enjoy your honesty!


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