Trusting God With Your Adult Child – Jodie Berndt

Trusting God With Your Adult Child – Jodie Berndt


our kids sometimes learn just like we do
in the valleys that can allow us to watch them go through a hard time and
say alright maybe God is using this season to bring them to that ultimate
destination that’s saving relationship with him that place where God really is
glorified in their life welcome to the focus on the family
broadcast helping families thrive today we’re going to talk with Jodi burnt and
her husband Robbie is in the audience so we’re gonna validate everything you say
Jodi thumbs up or thumbs down but she has written a wonderful book praying the
scriptures for your adult children and I don’t know if there was a previous one
praying for your toddlers but you might want to come out with that one soon we
have praying the scriptures for your children that came out in 2001 and then
our kids got a little older and they began dating and driving and they got
praying the scriptures for your teens yes and then you know we have four
children and they’re all adults are launching into adults and I realized I
still needed to pray these babies and places to live and so came out with
praying the scriptures for your adult but it’s so good to have you here Focus
on the Family officially welcome delight of the year thank you so much and you’re
coming in from Virginia Beach one of our favorite places that’s such a great area
of the country wonderful area but I’ll tell you so is this place you’ve touched
on this prayers do change don’t they and John and I were laughing about it but
it’s so true and you’ve experienced it you’ve written about it what’s happening
there is your kids mature you’re right they do change and the issues are always
significant when you’re the parent when it’s your child I when I wrote praying
the scriptures for your children I remember interviewing a mom who was very
concerned because her six-year-old had been caught swiping crayons out of the
sunday school supply cabinet and you know I you giggle about that but but she
was concerned as we would be if our child thought it was a perhaps you know
a sign of the crime sprees to come no yeah but you kind of hope that’s a
whoopsie when they’re six but then as I was doing the adult children book I
talked with parents whose kids were really in some more established patterns
you know and and whether it was knowing how to manage their money or use their
time or find a job or some of the trickier issues of addictions
pornography marital troubles you know a lot of parents are looking at their kids
and just seeing some stress there and those things weigh heavier we say little
people little problems big people big problems and there
now in the book you refer to this parenting phase which again I’m just
about to experience so you’re teaching me along with probably thousands of
others right now that have teenagers in the home still but you kind of compare
adult children to playing whack-a-mole whack-a-mole could be at any phase if
you have more than one child you’re playing whack-a-mole because as soon as
you get you know one where you think okay we’re squared away we’re on a good
path you know another issue pops up and you just spend your life whack-a-mole
but it’s okay in that regard you know you think of the perfect parent oh who
is that got him so yeah that’s so he had two children and he seemed to have to
play whack-a-mole as well when it came to Adam and Eve I mean describe that you
talk about the formula the Lord had it he knew what was right for them and they
disobeyed him and it’s kind of the pattern when you’re a parent you do feel
a little more sense of where God was that I think with Adam and Eve and
humanity gets so much encouragement from the Lord and his parenting because sure
just like Adam and Eve we all stray and our kids stray and yet we see God’s
limitless love and that nothing we do can ever diminish that love for us and I
try to draw you know inspiration and strength for that as I parent my own
children saying hey don’t be surprised when they take a walk on the wild side
make a step here are there we all do I want to move it that way because that’s
where the nitty gritty is parents you know we have limited control and
influence I don’t know that we realize that I think we come out of an a period
when they’re small that you do have a lot of influence and control and then
you want to exert that at 13 14 15 right when they’re trying to move right away
from that control describe that lack of influence love actually a friend sent me
a poem just this week and she said I won’t quote the poem right but the gist
of it was when you were a little I touched you and I covered you with the
blanket tucking you in now you’re grown you’re out of my reach and I’m covering
you with my prayers that’s and I just loved that image because if our kids are
still in the home they may still be out of our reach emotionally psychologically
they might not want to hear what we have to say and then they’re
older they might be physically out of our reach but they’re never out of God’s
reach and I love that he invites us to partner with him you know he we know
he’s sovereign he’s got good plans good purposes but he wants us involved in the
way he invites us to partner with him is through prayer yeah I’m thinking of some
parents not that I would ever do this but you pray about tucking in and all
that then when they’re teenagers you’re praying for that opportunity to lecture
lord give me that chance to really lay out the boundary and I want to get
because it is so easy for us to say hey this is the right thing to do can’t you
see it why don’t you see it right and you know sometimes don’t you think God
says that does I’m sorry sometimes yes yes but I just you know I
love what my friend Jeannie kunin I think she’s been a guest on your show
she wrote mom set free and she has a line she says we are significant in our
children’s lives but we’re not sovereign and you know as parents we beat
ourselves up thinking oh I missed this opportunity I didn’t do this right or we
might pat ourselves on the back of our kids do something well we think yes but
in neither case do we deserve the blame or the credit our kids are individual
people just like we are and they’re gonna make their own choices and we can
be significant we can pray we can counsel we can as you say pray for the
opportunities for our kids to listen to us but don’t always happen but we can’t
carry that burden yeah it’s so true you mentioned something
that I think is really helpful so if you’re in a position to write this one
down or dictate it this is this is gonna be a bit of the advice we really want
you to see or you just get the download you mentioned the five A’s focus you’re
so nice to say I mentioned that but it’s actually a ripoff from an author named
Jean Fleming I quoted her in the children book and then I loved it so
much and I needed it again for the adult book the five A’s are acknowledging
God’s hand on their lives admitting any areas where we resent how God created
our children which you know we all have those things acceptable okay that one
again I’ve never heard it quite that way the admit yes this is convicting again
this isn’t me this is Jean Fleming admit any areas where we resent
God created our children Wow and I think we need to go before the Lord sometimes
and say you knew what you were doing and I don’t know um I gotta get with your
program but then she says accept God’s design for each child thank him for how
they’re made affirm his purpose in creating our
children for his glory I love that because you can look at it you could say
well I don’t know about that character trade I my child’s too shy my jobs to
outgoing you know my whatever it is and you say no you know what I’m gonna
affirm that God made him that way some 139 he knows how we’re formed and then
finally the fifth day is – Ally Ally ourselves with God’s plan for their
lives say I want to get on your program guide you know Jody what it strikes me
hearing it in that context how prayer becomes almost an antidote to your worry
to your fears to your control if you can actually pray this absolutely it relaxes
you in the relationship in a very positive way yes I think that for
parents at least for me and I would imagine for a lot of your listeners when
we find out something’s not right going wrong whether it’s the six-year-old
swiping the you know crayons or the 16 year old experimenting with substance
abuse the 28 year old falling out of his job whatever our default position can
often be worry or fear or even anger you know why don’t it those are all good
Christian actors thank you but I think God would say you know what let me just
tell you I’m calling you in I’m letting you see what’s going on in your child’s
life because guess what I’ve got plans and purposes and they’re good and I want
to work with you I want to invite you into this partnership with me so that we
can you can pray and I can answer and we can work in your child’s life so instead
of fear and worry our default position should be prayer and trust it’s not for
me all the time but I’m trying to get there you know and I need to ask this
question now I know we’re gonna cover more of this later but the woman
particularly the mom who really struggles with that fear and control and
maybe they still have teenagers in the home and maybe they’re just launched and
they’re out on their own now but that fear and that control and that
how do you as a mom particularly Jodi how do you pull back from that did you
have this kind of hey it’s in God’s hands attitude the whole time or with
friends it’s kind of less a fare the whole hits in God’s hands well see to
that yeah yeah I didn’t have that I will tell you though there were times with
our children when I would get too weary or too discouraged to pray
I would think we’ve been walking through this particular season for a long time
I’m not seeing the needle moving should I just like I told a story last night I
was speaking to a group I said our son there was a season when I just wanted to
buy him a pack of cigarettes put him out on the street corner because I thought
that’s gonna save us all a lot of worry he’s gonna wind up there anyway let go I
do not advise no but I share that discourage and that’s where I think you
mentioned the community of parents I was part of a moms in prayer group and those
women stepped into the gap for me they said you know we’ll take that up we will
pray for your son and they did that for our girls – one of the things and I did
that for them because kind of like you know the story Moses when the Israelites
are fighting down in the valley and Aaron and her have to come alongside and
hold up his hands because when his hands are up the Israelites are winning and
when they fall down they are losing the battle and so the other guys come along
and they hold up his hands and the victory comes and I think that we need
that with these other friends prayer partners and they don’t know what to be
your your social best friend they don’t even have to be just like you but
someone who will lift up your children and that’s getting back to your point of
the community one of the reasons I did a study guide for the adult children book
it’s available free download on my website at Jodie burn calm and one of
the reasons I did that as I wanted to give parents a resource to say I’m gonna
grab a friend or two I’m gonna go through some of these prayer needs work
through the scriptures together so that I can support my friend and her children
and she can do that for me because I think we really need that well it’s so
good and I think it helps to relax the fearful heart yes I mean that’s I think
the key benefit you learned that others are struggling through those kind of
difficulties really you know they can they can say hey let’s do a little
perspective change let’s get God’s Word in there hmm and I hope our conversation
with Joanie burnt today on focus on the family is offering
a little bit of that a reorientation about the perspective of what you’re
dealing with with your adult children the book we’re talking about is praying
the scriptures for your adult children trusting God with the ones you love
we’ve got that available at our website focus on the family calm / broadcast or
call 800 the letter A and the word family and we can tell you more Jody
let’s get to it describe what a prayer blessing sounds like for our adult
children I love that you say prayer blessing because one of the things I
think people who have adult children sometimes face is I’m not sure I like
the choice my child has made you know kids don’t come to adulthood the same
way we do all those traditional markers of go to school get a job find a place
to rent find someone to marry get a home you know although they do things
differently out of order they skip some steps they make choices that we might
not always agree with and yet as we pray for our kids I think we can also bless
them we don’t have to agree with everything they’re doing to say I bless
you you know impulse some of those blessings
out of Scripture our family loves the number-6 one may the Lord bless you and
keep you make us face shine on you and there’s so many others I do a whole
chapter on blessing but because a blessing is not the same thing as an
endorsement yeah you know it’s not saying get on your Roger that way to go
and you know your life of sin it’s not that it’s just saying I’m forecasting
God’s favor over your life I’m speaking favor over your life I’m opening the
door so God can work these blessings and provide them in your life now speak to
that mom or even that dad who has that child that in their heart of hearts
they’re worried and there’s evidence being worried it’s not flippant it’s not
that there’s a personality conflict it’s because the crayon stealing that you
talk about in that one example has now become more severe they’re in a bad
place they’re in a dark place maybe they don’t want to go to church and you know
the more severe issues how does a parent overcome the obvious and still pray and
a positive well I love that question because it really gets to the heart of
what this is all about and as I interviewed parents for the book
and hearing their stories there are a lot of folks whose kids were walking a
very tough road sexual sin faith crisis walking away prodigal children all of
that and these parents cried out to the Lord and it was very interesting because
it was almost like you know I could have put them in a soundproof booth where
they didn’t know where to each other was saying but a refrain that I heard over
and over again was as they took those fears and those worries to God and said
what do I do what they felt like the Lord said to them was love them love
your kids they know what they’re doing is wrong you’ve spent you know years
lecturing I’m teaching I’m trying to plant God’s Word and his commands they
know you don’t have to remind them of that you’re gonna love them and pray for
them and trust me to work in their lives the prayer verse I have hung on to in my
adult children parenting more than any other is Philippians 2:13 and that’s
where Paul says that it’s God who works in us to will and to act according to
his good purpose the NLT translation new living I think says God energizes us to
do and desire that which pleases him and I’ve prayed that I’ve said Lord my kids
are doing this or that it’s not lining up with what I think is your best plan
so would you energize them to do and desire that which would please you you
know in it this is the right thing you’re saying the right things you’re
living the right things in that regard I believe in the book you share a story
about a friend who maybe as part of that group you’re referring to but they were
living what I would say is a real world example where their daughter was
cohabiting with a boyfriend yeah and that here’s a shocker to all
our Christian parents that is a normal issue now we hear about that here at
focus on the finger loose and I had people read the book and say wait a
minute aren’t you worried you’re gonna offend
readers because everybody is cohabitating now and and that’s wrong
you know and I had to think well you know my understanding of Scripture is
right sex outside of marriage is not a happy thing well that proves the point
that we as parents are having to even teach at that level that something
so fundamental that we think is understood right but but speak to this
friends experience because I think it I just absolutely loved this sweet mom she
was so vulnerable and willing to share her own heart because she said she was
praying and praying and saying God convict them let them know what they’re
doing is wrong you know show them show them from your
word bring people into their lives to tell him that’s not your best plan on
and on you know prayer warrior mom which is a natural response me I defend that and just said stop they know that why
don’t you pray mom that they would see my love you know Romans tells us God’s
kindness leads us to repentance and so for her that was like an exhale that was
like an ability to let go and just say to the Lord yeah let me go deeper with
that because this is a topic for me that really in the parenting area
particularly I’m trying to communicate consistently whether the book a good dad
I wrote or others and I get criticized for this but it’s this idea that God
actually is in control and you got a in some ways you have to relax I guess it’s
a boundary question I’m asking you when is it lays a fair she referred to it
earlier were you too passive and where’s that healthy line to say you know what
we need to accept that God is shaping our child and I would suggest for all of
us worried parents that oftentimes children even adult children are shaped
in the valleys not on the mountaintops I know it’s true of my own life I learned
more when I was hurting than I learned when I was on the mountaintop dancing
yes you seem not to have an open ear at that point but when you’re crushed like
the scripture says he’s close to the brokenhearted saves those who are
crushed right you speak to that issue and how we need to have a little more
confidence as parents that it’s okay for our kids to be in a valley it is okay
for them to be in a valley I wish I had a secret formula for knowing you know
when to step in and when to sort of step back I don’t know the answer to that
other than maybe to look at the motivation you know are you trying to
correct the childhood behavior but you think it reflects on your parenting
are you trying to bring glory to God in and through their lives is there a quick
test for that okay which one is it Lord I think former most of the time answer
these three questions and you’ll know but yeah so I think you know some of it
we have to examine our own hearts of what are we trying to accomplish here
but then keep going back keep going back to the Lord to just say you know I
trusted you with this yesterday but I’m gonna have to trust you with this again
today and that was a great thing God taught me when I thought I was trusting
him and outcomes were not happening like I desired and I kind of took that up
with him I said what the heck could this child is doing this this is doing
child’s doing that and that’s not what I prayed and not what I thought you would
promise and God said you’re not trusting to me you’re trusting in an agenda
you’re trusting in an outcome and I had to really step back and go always right
so I need to re-examine my heart and say what am I looking for a result or a
relationship you said earlier his presence in the valleys and if his
presence are with our kids in that dark place what a blessing you know he’s
gonna be wooing them I think it’s that way a lot of times with prayer too and I
share the story of praying for our son when he was young that I had to pray
over I picked it in every December we pick a prayer verse for our children for
the year for the coming year what I think God might want to do in their
lives and that year I don’t know he was maybe five or six
I picked proverbs 23 verses 23 and 24 and I prayed father help
Robby get wisdom discipline and understanding let him be the righteous
man who brings joy to his parents the wise son in whom we delight and I’ll
tell you God didn’t answer that the next day or even the next week but over the
course of that year and then in the years following we saw a shaping take
place and it wasn’t a spotless journey he gotta ejected from a lacrosse game as
a nine-year-old you know but as I look at him now as a 22 year old young man
I see composure I see wisdom I see self-discipline it’s not perfect but
God’s done that Joey what what do you think about that prayer
was special to the Lord why did God process oh I’ll tell you I think what is
special about that prayer and any prayer that’s rooted in God’s Word is that when
we take the words first breathed by the father
I love praying the scriptures I mean we can pray anything we can say God help me
I told a story about that last night when I was speaking and and I know King
David you know help me Lord that’s fine prayer but I love tapping into God’s
Word I mean Jesus says if you remain in me and my words remain in you ask
whatever you wish and it will be done for you and that’s not a name it claim
it that’s not a guarantee slap a Bible verse on something and God has to do it
that is more I think what the Lord is saying is if you remain in me and my
words remain in you if they shape how you think how you process things if they
transform your perspective your desires your desires for your children your
prayers will begin to line up with what God already wants to do God wanted Robby
to have wisdom and discipline and understanding he wanted him to be a son
who brought delight to his parents I didn’t invent that I just prayed back
the words he gave us to begin with in Scripture I like that yeah I like it
God so good he knows all our needs and provides for all of them that was the
thing when I started writing the first book I surveyed parents to find out
their needs and I got all kinds of answers back I want kids to be wise I
want them to have good friendships I want them to be protected from harm I
want salvation I want them to find the right marriage partner whatever and I
used those verses to shape the table of contents for the book and as I dug
around in the Bible what was so cool was I realized there’s a verse for
everything there’s nothing we can think of or pray about that he hadn’t already
provided for and in that context how do you maintain patience as a parent I mean
because you’ll see one thing happened okay that’s good that gives you a little
buoyancy you got for the things that aren’t quite there yet and you continue
to worry so how do you say Lord I’m gonna hand this worry over to you and
I’m not going to live in this place of fear well I say that and then I say it
again 10 minutes later I mean see you like you’re reminding yourself what you
screaming myself and I’ll tell you the more we tell ourselves and remind
ourselves that God isn’t forgetful he’s not late
his timing is perfect and even if it doesn’t line up with our timetable or
our agenda we really can trust believe it or not that his is better and I’ve
learned that often the hard way but that’s where I have to keep going back
and saying I don’t understand this timetable but I trust you mmm Jodi I was
really intrigued by the distinction you make between destination prayers which
to me is we’re going to Disneyland we got that problem versus processed
prayers how do we get ready to go to Disneyland what’s the difference in
those two prayer types well I think it’s really helpful as we pray for our kids –
yes realize that they’re gonna be day and day out issues they face you know
are they gonna make this team get cut from this team get into this college not
you know marry this person not but we want to look at and pray with the
ultimate destination in mind that God would be glorified and that our children
would have a saving relationship with him third John and I think verse 4 says
I have no greater joy than that my children are walking in the truth and as
parents if we wrap our joy up in an earthly success or a temporal victory
that’s ok but it’s not going to give us the peace and the lasting satisfaction
is if we know our children are walking in the truth so if we keep that
destination in mind I think we can pray and like you said our kids sometimes
learn just like we do in the valleys that can allow us to watch them go
through a hard time and say alright maybe God is using this season to bring
them to that ultimate destination that’s saving relationship with him that place
where God really is glorified in their life and it might not be a fun walk the
whole way but destination keeps us able to trust I think and keeps us able to
have joy even when things aren’t looking exactly like we would design or desire
Jodi this has been great thanks for being with us
you’ve been such a treat to be here Lord bless you all thank you hey I’m John
fuller and thanks for watching get more info about focus over here and more from
our guests over there and be sure to subscribe to our channel as well

42 thoughts on “Trusting God With Your Adult Child – Jodie Berndt

  • Thank you for this encouragement today is my Youngest Daughters Birthday is today. i would love to hug her and tell her how much I love her, but she has not or will not speak to me.(It has been over 5 years) my heart breaks but i will pray these scriptures as I have for many years

  • Thank you Focus on the Family for reaching so many families by sharing God's truth! Thank you Jodie for answering God's call to write these books that God put on your heart. Our family has been blessed by Praying the Scriptures for Your Children when they were younger. They are now 14 and 15…I just started Praying the Scriptures for Your Teens. 🙏🏻❤️

  • This was delivered in God's perfect timing for me. My youngest son is 21 and has decided to join the Navy recently. My fear and anxiety has been severe, but this message was so encouraging and full of truth! I will pray scriptures over his new journey! Thank you all so much! God Bless!

  • I thank the Lord Jesus Christ for this powerful message! I so thank you Focus on the Family for providing such great glorifying, and edifying content! 🙂 May the Lord keep blessing you ABUNDANTLY!

  • Thank you so much ! Our heavenly Father is so perfect in his timing! I heard your broadcast yesterday in my car, praying for my adult daughter who is wayward in every way right now. This gave me the hope and certainty that I needed, right when I needed it. I love you guys and thank God for you! I have been listening for many years, since my 4 adult children were babies! I always say I raised my children with James Dobson! Thank you for your ministry and your many wonderful guests who have helped me so much through all these years!
    Monica Janacek

  • I don't have years to pray… I'm dealing with a man her psychologist said is a narcissistic sexual psychopath predator and threat to the baby???

  • Thank you. This information was right on time. Going through a storm right now. God is so good to me. God bless your ministry 🙇🏾‍♀️🙇🏾‍♀️

  • The problem is that my child has one, and the poor decisions that have been made are detrimental to the child as well as herself. That's the most difficult part.

  • My girls are 40 and 37 both married to wonderful but unbelieving men. – and have both drifted away from God. My youngest has now decided not to talk to me and it’s been a very painful time even though I have apologised for perceived wrong doing, written to her and love her unconditionally. I’m in a good place now as I’ve surrendered them both to His grace and kindness but I’m a peacemaker, but am now stepping away as the accusation was affecting me…..

  • I have discovered that my Mom prayers are like a giant duster over my adult children. I cannot make anything happen but I can lovingly dust away the confusion and the lies that they are battling today.

  • My oldest son is 24 and is an alcoholic and as if that wasn’t bad enough now he’s on meth. I have seen the side affects of his habits that have forever scarred me for life. He has been kicked out twice. This last time he has broken every rule we laid down for him when we agreed to let him come back. For money he will not work. He goes around buying junk and resells it for a few dollars profit. Sometimes he makes a huge sale but that’s not often and then he blows through the money he doesn’t make enough to pay his own way. I don’t tell his step dad a lot of it. I’m afraid he is going to over do it one day like several of his friends have already done. I pray all the time for him all the time. I have shown my son more love than anyone else in this world and he has crapped on me time and time again and yells at me and cusses when he comes home drunk. He is a black out drinker. I’m at my wits end. I just want to beat some sense into him. I’m so tired of feeling this way and putting up with his rule breaking and worthless way of living.

  • The greatest lessons for parents are taught through our children. Closest to my heart are my children so nothing brings me to the Father for strength and guidance like seeking His leadership for them. I can not parent without a yielded life to the one who created all of us..

  • Praying for every adult child in which was mentioned in the comment section below. Please pray for my beautiful adult child as well. God's continual blessings on your life.

  • I needed to hear this today.. been dealing with an adult son who when life storms happen he struggles with turning to alcohol instead of wholeheartedly to the Lord. This gave me peace in trusting him to God

  • Thank you for this interview. It has now encouraged me twice in the parenting season I am in. Priceless gift. ❤

  • Do you have any encouraging scriptures or words for the unprecedented number of good christian parents getting their children taken off of them by social workers and being placed with pedophiles?

  • Please pray for me to be a bless mother and to have children thank you lord jesus bless me body soul and my life

  • Let nO man say when he is tested or tempted that he is tested or tempted by God because God is not tempted by evil neither tempts He any man. James 1/13

  • Please help me pray from my son he is mentally lost. He has left home and is around people who mean him no good. Sadly, my son says he doesn't believe in God. I am pray on his behalf everyday, this is very difficult but I am standing on my faith that he will come home.

  • Great video! I have a question that’s been a debate with my family for a long time. When is the detrimental behavior of a child is constant and repeated do you need to continue to keep allowing it and forgiving it. My mother says you have to keep forgiving and allowing it. I don’t know that I can believe that God would want you to continue to allow a child to continue to continue in disruptive and abusive behavior. What do you do what does God’s word say about this?

  • Glory to the Lamb of God!
    Thank you to Focus on the Family and to Jodie for answering God's call to help so many of us dealing with like matters.

  • I never "took a walk on the wild side", I just stopped believing in the existence of god. I cannot detect any god at all, so I'm an atheist. You need to respect that if you want me to respect your beliefs in return. That's the real question… can you peacefully co-exist with atheists or those who believe differently than you?

  • THANKS VERY MUCH I DIDNT KNOW WHAT TO DO GOD LEAD ME TO THIS ☝🏽☝🏽☝🏽TO WATCH I WILL KEEP COMING BACK 🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽

  • I AM NOT ALONE I THOUGHT I WAS LITERALLY LOOSING MY MIND HAVE MERCY FORGIVE ME MY LORD JESUS FOR NOT TRUSTING WHAT YOU HAVE SHOWED ME WITH MY EYES WIDE SHUT FOR GIVE ME GLORY BE TO GOD 🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽😥😥😥😥THANKS

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