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God sent Jesus to earth to redeem the souls of mankind. He knew the death His son would face, and He knew that betrayal of a friendship would be one of the catalysts to make this event happen. When you think about this in a “natural” sense, we would say that no parent in their “right mind” would send their child on a mission knowing they would die. Nor would they tell them to befriend the person who would purposely hurt them. Most, if not all, would sacrifice themselves in their child’s place to avoid them experiencing any type of hurt. However, we serve a God who sees all and knows all, and thus, love overrode. Jesus came, briefly giving up his divinity so that all had an opportunity for salvation. But what about that friend that hurt your child? God knew it was all a part of the process.

According to How Parents Influence Their Children’s Friendships by Zick Rubin and Jone Sloman, parents influence their children’s friendships in five significant ways. *  They set the stage by choosing certain neighborhoods and schools. They arrange social contacts by scheduling playdates and providing opportunities in organized activities. They coach their children by giving them advice and guidance about who should be their friends. They model social relationships. They provide a home base influencing a child’s openness to exploring new relationships. Why do parents do this? This parental instinct happens because parents want to keep their children safe and help them to secure the best future possible. So, how do you deal with the Judas in your children’s lives? Like God, you must know that it is a part of the process.

Friendships and having the ability to choose friends are all a part of the growing process for children.  If they are living life, it is not a matter of if they will get hurt but when they get hurt. No matter when it happens, you must remember it is all a part of the process. You did everything you knew how to set the right environment and put them with the right people. You warned them about who to stay away from, and they may have taken the risk anyway. But now, you must empower them to move forward through the hurt. If processed right, the pain will cause growth. Here are five ways to help your child deal with betrayal in their lives.

  1. Pray the scriptures over them.

  2. Acknowledge the pain.

  3. Allow them to grieve.

  4. Encourage them.

  5. Show them how to forgive.

Father God, my child is in pain. You said in Romans 8:18 that the present suffering cannot compare to the glory that will come forth. In Revelations 21:4, you tell us of a day that is coming where you will wipe away every tear. Right now, we are asking for a little heaven on earth asking you to wipe away my child’s tears. This moment of affliction is preparing them for greater. Help them to grieve properly and receive the lesson you desire for them to learn. Give them wisdom and help them to forgive. Show me what to do to be an encourager and provide me with the patience to give them space to grieve. Then, at the right time, bring their hearts into a lighter space. Rebuild trust where it needs rebuilding. We ask this in Jesus’s name. Amen.

-Jacqui Wilson, Founder

* https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007%2F978-1-4757-9415-1_10

**Be sure to sit down as a family and discuss this week’s family bible study lesson on the main page.

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