Participants: Tom Waters
Series Code: FC
Program Code: FC000313
00:31 Welcome to Faith Chapel,
00:33 I'm Tom Waters with Restoration International.
00:36 Today we're gonna be talking about something
00:38 that is vitally important.
00:40 Something that unfortunately is slipping
00:44 away in the world, something that is
00:48 being deceptively stolen even from our
00:52 churches and something that parents sadly
00:58 are trading away for busy, pressure-filled
01:03 lifestyles. What I'm talking about today
01:07 is preserving the family. Is that important?
01:12 You know we live in a world that is made up
01:15 of families and we have a church that's made
01:20 up of families. And the devils wants to destroy
01:24 in every way possible. He wants the destruction
01:28 of the family. And unfortunately, sadly,
01:31 we see many of the evidences of the family
01:35 being broken and beginning to crumble.
01:39 It affects every part of our world today.
01:42 You know the Apostle Paul in First Timothy,
01:46 he pleased with us as parents.
01:48 He says keep that which is committed
01:52 to the trust. If there is any trust that we
01:54 have as parents today. It is the trust of these
01:59 children God has give to us. And he is calling
02:02 to us to keep that trust and the only
02:04 way we can keep that trust is as we
02:07 keep our trust in God our heavenly Father.
02:11 You know you may find yourself today.
02:14 There maybe someone that is struggling
02:17 with preserving your family, because you've
02:20 been left in a difficult situation.
02:22 You've been left as a single parent.
02:26 I tell you that Jesus Christ wants to be a
02:32 husband to the single parent.
02:34 To the single mother who is struggling.
02:36 Jesus wants to be a father to those children,
02:41 and I can tell you today that we know
02:45 of many situations that have tragic
02:48 circumstance that have painful and difficult
02:51 circumstances, but when that single parent.
02:55 Whether that's a father or a mother.
02:58 In those situations we know many people
03:01 today that are preserving their
03:03 family in spite of the difficult circumstances.
03:06 And those of who that, that have a
03:09 very blessed marriage union. Are you really
03:13 preserving your family? Are you allowing God
03:17 to work in your home in such a way that
03:20 you're keeping the family close together,
03:23 that you have the hearts of your children.
03:26 I remember when I was a boy of 8 or 9-years-old
03:30 my brother who is seven years older then me.
03:34 We were given something to look forward to.
03:37 It was going to be one of these riverboat tours.
03:41 One of these double- decker boats and we
03:45 were looking forward to the day that we
03:49 could take that ride on the boat.
03:51 They told us that we can each take a
03:53 friend with us. My brother, he could
03:56 have one of his older friends and I can have
03:58 one of my young friends and so that
04:01 day finally came, we were excited and we
04:05 wanted to be on that upper deck of that
04:07 double-decker boat. So we could see what was
04:11 going on, my parents, they were gonna stay
04:12 down quietly just enjoying the passing
04:16 scenery down in the lower deck.
04:18 Well my brother and his friend, they were at
04:21 the kind of the far end of the boat and
04:24 so we were enjoying the ride.
04:27 And then all of a sudden these three rough
04:32 kind of tough looking youths just walked
04:36 quickly towards us. My little friend and I and
04:40 there they were upset because I supposedly
04:46 had thrown a paper cup down on top of them.
04:49 I didn't even have a paper cup,
04:52 I didn't throw it down on them.
04:54 I didn't know what they were talking about,
04:55 but they were upset. And they made it very
04:58 clear to me, we're gonna go find some
05:01 of our friends and we're gonna throw
05:03 you overboard. Oh! Here I was,
05:08 can you imagine just a few minutes into
05:11 this boat ride that we've all been looking
05:13 forward to it and now I'm being threatened
05:15 while they went down to look for their friends
05:17 and I made a be line for my big brother.
05:21 I told him what had happened and
05:23 found out that it was my brother who dropped
05:25 the cup of all things down and I was the
05:28 one getting accused for it, so my brother
05:30 said we better get down with dad okay
05:34 and I agreed. Let's get with dad.
05:36 So we went down there and we told
05:39 dad what was happening and he
05:42 said oh just stay with me, so its, its gonna
05:46 be okay. You know they're probably just
05:48 upset and you know we'll be fine,
05:50 just stay here till things calm down, so we did,
05:54 we stayed there. And we had our chairs
05:58 just sitting along the edge and I was sitting
06:01 right there next to dad. And all of a sudden
06:04 I had this feeling and I don't know if you've
06:06 ever experienced it, maybe you have.
06:08 You know, you can tell somebody is looking
06:11 at you. Not because we have eyes in the back
06:14 our head, but because somehow you can feel
06:16 like somebody is staring at you.
06:18 And when I turned around and I looked
06:22 back there were ten somebodies staring at me.
06:27 Ten sets of eyes and some of those some bodies
06:32 were bigger then my dad. And the biggest
06:38 one said to me and he looked right at me
06:41 and he said we're gonna throw you overboard.
06:46 Oh, even when I say the story all those years
06:52 ago my heart still speeds up a little bit,
06:55 because I'll tell you that day when that
06:58 big roughen said that to me, my heart
07:02 started pounding. But something very
07:05 amazing happened then, right at that moment,
07:08 when he said that my dad stood up,
07:13 I mean it was immediate.
07:16 He stood up and he turned and he face
07:20 those ten rough teenagers.
07:23 And here's what he said I'll never forget it.
07:26 You'll have to go through me first.
07:30 Oh! What words to an 8 or 9-year-old
07:35 who already thinks that their dad is the
07:37 strongest man in the world.
07:38 And I had to tell you I was raised on a
07:41 farm growing up as a boy and my dad
07:44 was a powerful man. He's 81-years-old
07:47 now and you know he's not so powerful anymore.
07:51 It's a blessing now to be able to reciprocate
07:54 and to take care of him. Now in his older age,
07:57 but you know at that time in my life my dad
08:01 was my hero and he was a strong man.
08:03 He was physically strong, but in my
08:05 eyes as in many little boys eyes,
08:07 dad is a strongest man and so when
08:10 he stood up and said you'll have to go
08:11 through me first. Wow! That's my dad.
08:16 Well I tell you, thankfully not one
08:19 of those roughens took the challenge
08:23 of my father. And I have to believe as
08:26 I looked back that it was because of the
08:28 grace of God and because of the angels
08:31 of the Lord intervening and so
08:34 we're able to enjoy the rest of that boat trip.
08:38 But why do I bring up the story to, to
08:41 say something nice about my dad well
08:43 it's a nice memory. But there's something
08:45 very important in preserving the family.
08:48 My dad had a message for those
08:50 rough teenagers. And that is that I'm gonna
08:54 do whatever I need to do to protect my family.
08:57 You know I believe dads should be heroes today.
09:01 I believe that they should be protecting
09:04 and preserving the family.
09:06 I believe we men need to be in that position
09:10 and again if you find yourself out there
09:12 as a single parent, mother, who doesn't
09:17 have someone to stand by your side.
09:18 God wants to be there to help you preserve
09:21 your family. The question is, are we
09:24 asking, or are we saying like my father
09:29 said that day, you'll have to go through
09:32 me first. Is that what's really happening
09:36 in our families or has the devil stolen
09:39 a march in your home. Has he come in
09:43 and has he begun to ravage your family
09:46 without you even making a resistance,
09:49 without you even saying you're gonna
09:51 have to go through me first.
09:52 You're not gonna get to my family.
09:55 You're not gonna take over this home
09:57 without first coming through me in the
10:01 grace of the Lord. Is home a refugee.
10:05 Is your home a safe environment
10:09 for your children. Is it a safe place for
10:13 the marriage to grow. Is it a refugee to
10:16 come home to. Do you know what's happening
10:19 there on the Internet? Do you really know
10:24 what's happening when your children
10:28 are sitting there in front of the computer.
10:30 Do you know what they are doing?
10:31 Do you know what they're seeing?
10:33 Do you what they're listening to,
10:34 when they have those walkmans on
10:36 and those iPods today. Do you know what's
10:39 really going into their head and into their heart.
10:43 What about the television? Yes,
10:46 you're watching the television right now,
10:48 and I hope it's edifying and encouraging
10:51 you today, but are you saying you have
10:54 to go through me first for the things
10:57 that are coming in to your home through
10:59 the television. Are you preserving the family?
11:03 What about the telephone? Are you
11:06 really aware of what your young people
11:09 are talking about on the telephone?
11:11 Are you aware of what they're learning?
11:14 Are you preserving your family?
11:17 You know it's a tragic thing that the kind
11:22 of ministry work that we do in restoring
11:24 individuals and families to the Lord Jesus Christ.
11:27 We hear a lot of very powerful stories
11:31 of God's life changing ability, transforming
11:34 power in the life, but we also hear
11:36 a lot of very tragic stories. One father
11:41 and mother came to us and they said
11:43 you know our son, we thought he was doing
11:45 home work projects on the computer
11:48 he had to look up things on the Internet and,
11:50 and we're quite certain that's the
11:52 way it started, but for six months
11:55 we found out only recently when we
11:58 caught him. We found out the things
12:02 that he had been watching on the Internet
12:05 that had nothing to do with his school work.
12:09 Morally life and mind destroying things
12:14 on that Internet. Do you really know
12:18 what your young people are taking in
12:21 when they're involved in these different
12:24 medias that are so readily available,
12:27 are we as parents truly preserving our families?
12:33 What about the associations that
12:36 our young people are involved in.
12:37 We do seminars all over the world in churches
12:41 and you know one of the things that
12:43 we observe and we observe it for two
12:47 reasons. One, because we have such an
12:49 earnest desire for the families to be
12:52 preserved in Jesus Christ, in the church,
12:56 in the nation. We have such a desire
12:58 and secondly, because we have children of
13:02 our own. And we know what God has called
13:04 us to do in preserving our own family and
13:07 so often, almost in every situation, we,
13:11 when we're at churches or at places where
13:15 we do seminars we often see the children
13:18 running wild, running free.
13:23 It's a gathering place and they're taking off
13:26 with the children of other, other people's
13:29 children and the parents don't know
13:32 what they're learning. And we hear some of
13:34 the sad stories of what is picked up in
13:37 some of these associations.
13:38 Do you know what your children are doing?
13:42 Do you know where your children are?
13:44 Do you know what they're learning from
13:46 these young associates? I hope that you do
13:51 and you're preserving your family.
13:54 I had one gentleman come to me.
13:56 We were involved in one of our family camps
14:00 and he came to me and said, can we go
14:02 for a walk, I need to talk to you about
14:05 a situation. And so we went for a walk.
14:07 Quite a long walk actually and he said
14:08 you know my daughter has given
14:12 us all kinds of problems and we see the problem
14:15 skimming primarily from associations
14:18 she's having with two young people
14:20 at the church. What shall I do?
14:24 And I said, well I first of all I can't tell
14:26 you what to do, I don't know the whole
14:28 situation, but what you're describing to
14:31 me and the symptoms that you're seeing,
14:33 I'll tell you what I would do as a parent
14:36 understanding what you're describing.
14:39 I said I would pull back that association.
14:43 I would cut back that association.
14:47 I would give my time, your wife and you
14:50 to give time to replace that association
14:54 with position association with yourself, with your
14:57 family, rebuild the connection between you
15:02 and your daughter and then govern those
15:04 outside associations in a family setting,
15:07 not just leaving your daughter to run with
15:12 those youths that are having problems.
15:14 He said but I can't do that. If I, if I cut off
15:18 that associations, she'll rebel.
15:20 She might even leave home. I said if you're
15:24 that nervous about your daughter response
15:27 to you drawing a clear boundary to protect
15:29 her I said then she's already in rebellion.
15:31 I said what she needs is to know that
15:34 you care enough to stop her, that you
15:37 love her enough to stop. He said I'm
15:40 afraid to do it. I'm afraid of what might
15:42 happen. And for those of you out there
15:45 today that maybe afraid of drawing a
15:46 clear boundary, please don't be afraid,
15:49 that's what our young people are calling for.
15:51 But the clear boundary must be drawn with
15:53 principles and it must be drawn in
15:55 the strength of Jesus Christ and part of
15:57 what must replace, what we take away
16:00 must be us. One of the greatest blessings
16:03 that my wife Elaine and I have learned
16:06 in our parenting is that we must first be
16:08 willing to give ourselves to our children.
16:12 You know as we give ourselves first to
16:16 our children. Then we can give them the
16:19 things that they need. The positive and the
16:21 negative, we can give them the boundaries
16:23 that are given to us through the word
16:24 of God, but we need to give ourselves.
16:27 Time to listen, time to be there for them.
16:30 You know that man was afraid to make
16:32 that step and his daughter came to
16:34 my wife and I later and she said all
16:36 I was looking for was for my father to be
16:39 strong enough to draw a line and pull me
16:42 out this association, I don't know how to
16:44 get out of it. I'm under peer pressure,
16:46 I need my dad to help me break away from
16:49 a very difficult and uncomfortable situation.
16:53 I hope that you'll hear the cry of your
16:56 young people, it doesn't always sound
16:59 that way. Sometimes the cry comes in a
17:01 very different way. But listen to the cry,
17:04 go to the Lord and say Lord, help me to
17:07 recognize what you're asking me to do to
17:10 preserve the family, to keep that which is
17:13 committed to my trust. I wanna share a very
17:16 positive experience, a lady came to me
17:18 after a seminar and she said.
17:20 I've got a question for you.
17:22 She said my son is seven-years-old
17:23 I wanna know, she came quite strong.
17:26 She said I wanna know what you would do
17:29 if you were in my position? Then I said,
17:31 well then I wanna make it very clear
17:34 that you wanna know what I would do in
17:37 your situation that I'm not telling you
17:39 what you need to do. But I'll tell you what
17:42 I would do if I were in this situation.
17:45 So she told me her whole story.
17:47 She said my son is seven-year-old,
17:49 he's been involved in a paper route,
17:52 he wants to make money and that's great.
17:54 He been evolved in the paper route with
17:57 two older boys and she said you know
18:01 he comes home and every time
18:03 he comes home from that delivery.
18:05 It seems like he's picked up some other
18:08 attitudes that are not positive and he
18:11 becomes more resistive and she said
18:14 you know it concerns me, so what should I do?
18:17 I said well again I'm not gonna tell you
18:19 what you should do, but I'll tell you from
18:21 what you've described to me, if I were in
18:23 your situation I would pull your son,
18:27 if he was my son. I pull my seven-year-old
18:30 son off the paper route tomorrow.
18:33 Oh! She said I knew you were gonna say that.
18:37 I knew you were gonna say that.
18:38 If I pull him off the paper route then
18:41 the mother of those two boys who I know
18:43 is gonna think that I think my son's better
18:46 than they are and I'm holier than they all
18:49 and they're gonna get really upset.
18:51 And she's gonna get upset at me.
18:52 I knew you were gonna say that.
18:54 I said well you asked what I would do.
18:57 Yes, I know I did but, but I just knew you
18:59 were gonna say that. I said well, you know
19:03 I have leave you with the Lord then to do
19:05 what God is asking you do.
19:08 Well I got a letter from this lady.
19:10 A few weeks later. In the first paragraph
19:14 it opened up and she was telling me
19:16 how upset she was of what I told her and that,
19:19 that I was telling her that she had to take
19:21 her son off the paper route and I thought
19:22 oh Lord, I don't like these kind of letters.
19:24 But you know the next paragraph
19:26 it all changed. She said one night I got
19:30 on my knees and I was under such conviction
19:32 that I just opened my heart to God and
19:34 I said I realize God I've been kicking against
19:37 the pricks. It's not what Tom Waters said,
19:40 its what you've been trying to tell me,
19:42 Lord, I'm finally willing, I'll do whatever you
19:45 ask me to do. Just tell me what should
19:47 I do Lord. Well she said, the Lord told me
19:50 to take my son off the paper route.
19:52 She said I did and she said you know what
19:55 she said in that letter. She said when I took
19:58 my son off the paper route the first thing
20:01 he said to me is thank you mother.
20:03 Thank you for doing that. I was under
20:06 such a negative influence and I didn't
20:09 know how to handle that influence with
20:11 these bigger boys. Thank you for being
20:13 willing to take me from that paper route.
20:16 And then she said can you believe that
20:19 in a few days I got a call from the mother
20:22 of those two boys and she said to me
20:25 thank you for having the courage to make
20:28 the decision that you made, because now
20:30 I'm gonna start dealing with my boys,
20:33 because of your example and being
20:36 willing to do what you did with your son.
20:38 Well I tell you that's, that's encouraging.
20:42 We need to preserve our families.
20:44 God is calling us to do whatever we need
20:48 to do to preserve our families.
20:49 I ask my young people, what has
20:54 God done in our family to really preserve
20:56 our family? What has made the difference?
20:58 And I asked them each individually
21:01 and separately, so that there wouldn't
21:03 be any influence. At the time I asked
21:05 them this question, my eldest daughter
21:07 who is now 24. I asked her when
21:10 she was 18-years-old, without any hesitation.
21:13 No, no chance to think through the
21:15 question. I said I just wanna get your
21:17 first response. She said this to me,
21:19 she said you've used wise sheltering.
21:24 I never heard the term before.
21:26 Wise sheltering. What, I said Alison,
21:29 what do you mean by wise sheltering?
21:31 She said you have sheltered us from
21:36 the bad and you have showered us
21:40 with the good. Oh my heart just lead
21:44 for joy when I heard this.
21:45 This was not something that I said
21:47 you know I'm gonna ask you this question.
21:49 I want you to think on it for a few days
21:51 and comeback and give me an answer.
21:52 She came back with that response in less
21:56 than 30 seconds and I just praised the Lord,
21:59 because I asked her right out of the blue.
22:00 What do I mean by wise sheltering,
22:04 and what did she mean by wise sheltering?
22:07 Well I wanna give you an example.
22:09 We had a man in our home.
22:10 First time he'd ever been in our home
22:12 and we didn't know the man,
22:16 he was there, we were working through
22:17 some things that he had some needs
22:19 and he was sharing with us and he was
22:23 telling a story that involved our former
22:28 President Bill Clinton and as he was telling
22:31 a story. He was becoming very graphic
22:33 and he was talking about some of the problems
22:36 and some of the moral dilemmas.
22:38 Dilemmas that our former President was
22:40 involved in. And I could tell that where
22:43 he was headed. He was going to say
22:46 something very graphic that the years of
22:48 my three young people did not need to hear.
22:52 And the Lord called to me to stop him.
22:55 Now that's very embarrassing, that's rude,
22:58 but here he was in my home, he's beginning
23:01 to head down the track that I know.
23:03 Not because I'm a mind reader, but I can tell,
23:05 I can tell exactly where he was going.
23:07 The Lord called to me, stop him.
23:09 Now here's the question parents.
23:11 Are we gonna honor God or are we gonna
23:15 try to honor this person, not make
23:17 them feel bad and dishonor God and
23:20 bring the approach upon those that God
23:23 is asking us to preserve first in your own home.
23:26 Well by faith I turned to the man and
23:31 I said stop, don't speak another word.
23:35 You should have seen the expression
23:36 on his face. I said can we just step outside
23:41 for a moment. I'd like to just speak to you.
23:43 I know this is difficult, this is embarrassing,
23:46 we stepped outside and I took that man
23:48 for a walk, down our road, up in the
23:50 mountains. We walked together and I began
23:52 to tell him what I had given in order
23:56 to preserve my family. I told him the
24:00 commitment that I made to God for my girls
24:02 and for my son. And you know as I talked
24:06 to that man the tears began to stream
24:08 down his face. He said I didn't know.
24:11 I didn't know that there could be moral
24:14 purity in young people in this generation.
24:17 He said, praise God that you stopped me
24:21 from saying exactly what you knew
24:23 I was gonna say and to defile the ears
24:26 of your young people who did not need to
24:28 hear that filthiness. Thank you for being
24:33 willing to stand for your family.
24:36 It encourages me. Well, I ask Emily.
24:40 Emily what, what is, what is God doing.
24:44 What has he done to preserve our family.
24:45 And Emily said, its our communication.
24:49 Emily at that time was 16-years-old,
24:51 she is 22 now. It's our communication.
24:54 We've always had communication.
24:55 We can always come to you no matter
24:57 what it is. No matter how hard it is.
24:59 No matter what we've done, we can
25:00 communicate and we will work through it
25:03 and we will always find the principles in
25:06 God's word and live them out practically.
25:08 It's our communication together that has
25:12 made the difference the blessing.
25:16 And then I went to our son. What is it son?
25:20 And at that time he was 13-years-old,
25:22 he is 19 now. I said what is it?
25:25 He said you have spend time with us.
25:29 You give us your time, so that we
25:32 don't desire the things of the world.
25:37 Parents, I wanna just encourage you today,
25:40 give time, give yourself. Give what only you can
25:48 give in Jesus Christ to reach the hearts of
25:51 your children. Recently, we were visiting in a
25:56 home and the man there who was quite,
25:59 well off said you know, Tom, you're a very,
26:04 very rich man. He said you have the hearts
26:08 of your children. You can't put a price on
26:11 that in today's society. You have the hearts
26:15 of your children. He said I long to have
26:17 the hearts of my children. He said
26:19 you're a rich man. And I tell you friends,
26:22 it will not happen by accident.
26:24 If we're going to preserve our families
26:26 in Jesus Christ they must become our first
26:30 mission field. Whether you're a Christian
26:33 or a non-Christian if you wanna preserve
26:35 your family, you must take time.
26:37 Time to communicate, time to give yourself
26:41 to what matters most, time to work through
26:44 discipline, time to develop boundaries
26:48 that are meaningful, boundaries that are
26:50 based on the word of God.
26:51 If we will give ourselves to our children,
26:54 God will preserve our families.
26:56 God wants to be able to say to us well done.
27:01 Shall we just ask God to bless our families
27:03 as we close. Father in heaven,
27:06 we need your blessing in order to make the
27:09 difference in preserving our families.
27:11 We do wanna hear the words well done.
27:13 We want to be there with our young people
27:16 to enter your kingdom for eternal life.
27:18 Please give us the wisdom and understanding
27:21 as parents to know how to preserve our
27:24 families through Jesus Christ we pray, amen.
27:29 Oh what a blessing privilege we have.
27:33 You know the world may scoff at you.
27:36 Even your church if you're a church
27:38 attendee. Your church may scoff at you.
27:42 If you're a non-Christian today they may call
27:44 you a fool for doing the things that you
27:46 need to do to preserve your family,
27:48 but your children will rise up and call
27:51 you blessed. God bless you
27:54 as you preserve your family.