Taboo Talk

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365 Devotionals: Hope For God’s People

But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. James 1:22 AMP

The Seeds of Promise Devotional Series

Taboo Talk

Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the cause of the fatherless; plead the case of the widow. Isaiah 1:17 AMP

Bible Basis

August Book Read From Read To Devotional
1st Isaiah Chapter 1 Chapter 4 Taboo Talk

Memory Verses

Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the cause of the fatherless; plead the case of the widow. Isaiah 1:17 AMP

Key people

Here is a list of key people found in today’s reading (in order of appearance) with bios from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Isaiah. the 8th-century BC Israelite prophet after whom the Book of Isaiah is named.

Today’s Devotional Reading: Isaiah 1 – 4

Isaiah 1 Amplified Version (AMP)
Isaiah 2 Amplified Version (AMP)
Isaiah 3 Amplified Version (AMP)
Isaiah 4 Amplified Version (AMP)

From Matthew Henry’s Commentary

The first verse of this chapter is intended for a title to the whole book, and it is probable that this was the first sermon that this prophet was appointed to publish and to affix in writing (as Calvin thinks the custom of the prophets was) to the door of the temple, as with us proclamations are fixed to public places, that all might read them (Hab. 2:2), and those that would might take out authentic copies of them, the original being, after some time, laid up by the priests among the records of the temple. The sermon which is contained in this chapter has in it, I. A high charge exhibited, in God’s name, against the Jewish church and nation, 1. For their ingratitude, Isa. 1:2, 3. 2. For their incorrigibleness, Isa. 1:5. 3. For the universal corruption and degeneracy of the people, Isa. 1:4, 6, 21, 22. 4. For the perversion of justice by their rulers, Isa. 1:23. II. A sad complaint of the judgments of God, which they had brought upon themselves by their sins, and by which they were brought almost to utter ruin, Isa. 1:7-9. III. A just rejection of those shows and shadows of religion which they kept up among them, notwithstanding this general defection and apostasy, Isa. 1:10-15. IV. An earnest call to repentance and reformation, setting before them life and death, life if they compiled with the call and death if they did not, Isa. 1:16-20. V. A threatening of ruin to those that would not be reformed, Isa. 1:24; 28-31. VI. A promise of a happy reformation at last, and a return to their primitive purity and prosperity, Isa. 1:25-27. And all this is to be applied by us, not only to the communities we are members of, in their public interests, but to the state of our own souls.

Reflection

In the first Taboo Talk, we embarked upon a conversation with parents of faith – to encourage you to let your words (filtered by The Word of God) be the teachings that your children hear regarding subjects that have unfortunately been perverted by the world; which if kept purely, would not need to be taboo. From this we learned that the first step is to recognize the need for this conversation and to admit that we can do more to protect the best interests of our children. In so doing we recognize that it is not the responsibility of our children to make us good parents. And remember, even if your child looks like a stony soldier, that does not mean he (or she) is made of stone. If we do not reach out to our children, we leave them to experience the dearth that we read about in Isaiah.

It is our responsibility to raise our children to know God and hold Him in proper reverence. This is an important point of departure because it seems that some of us have avoided talking to our children (especially teens and young adults) because we perceive that they do not want to have this talk with us. But (God forbid) if all is not well, it will be our responsibility to bail them out, or to pick up the pieces (etc.). Why not focus our efforts on preemptive measures, rather than waiting for the other shoe to drop – or be dangled from the wire (a hood memorial). These are not images we want to face; and yet they are a reality for some. Then we agree: this is important enough to do without delay.

We pray for every parent or care taker participating in Taboo Talks.

Heavenly Father, forgive us for all offense to your throne. We repent and ask your restoration that we may be a light for our children and their children and the people of our several communities. We receive your son, Jesus and ask that you will grant us your Holy Spirit to guide our mission to raise our children in the beauty of holiness.

Lord, I thank you for these who have made a decision to elevate the lives of their children to your total care. Please camp your angels around these and their beloved. Touch every mother, every father, every aunt, every uncle, every grandmother, every grandfather, every godmother, every godfather, every sister, every brother, every daughter and every son, every teacher, every counselor, every doctor, every landlord, every professional and every volunteer. Let all who come into contact with these parents and their children be under your holy influence, doing such things as are right in your sight, decently and in order. Let no ill-willed hand or deed come near to them.

We thank you that no weapon formed against them shall prosper and that you will deliver such as be already bound. Heal the sick. Father, open hearts to receive your instruction. Help us to be doers of your Word and not hearers only. Protect the “village” working together to raise our children as partners with us, and not that we may abandon them and let others be the working few. We praise you Lord alone. You are worthy of honor and glory. We ask and do believe that you are able to perform it.

Now Lord, open doors that no man can close – to allow the lost to return to you. Close doors that no man can open – to keep the enemy from those who are already submitted to you. Father be the head of your family. We are yours and will be led by you. We surrender all to your will and to your way. We thank you for what you have already done. We believe you are working even now to fulfill. We thank you by faith, for that you will reveal. We praise you in advance. Thank you Lord in Jesus’ name. Amen.

To help parents and care takers have these taboo talks, here are a few tips.

  • Always pray before talking to your child, teen, young adult, or any person you are supporting as part of “the village.” We can not stress this enough. If you find the courage to even open a dialogue (and yes we understand that for some this is easier said than done even though it is necessary- especially if this will not be one of several previous conversations, but in fact the first time this portal has been opened), you may learn things you did not want to be true. You might not get the answers you want to hear. You might really need the Holy Spirit to help you keep things in perspective. You do not want to finally have an open door and let that be last time your child(ren) come(s) to you for advice or support. Pray for God’s guidance as to which topics to talk about and when. For example, if today is the first time you and your child, teen, etc. have a heart to heart, you will need to do so some relationship building first. Submit a prayer request.
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  • Pray with your children, not just for them. Sometimes, people (no matter the age), need to know you are praying because it speaks directly to their soul. Consider that many teens who do not pray are so not inclined because we who should be their example stopped praying with them when we stopped tucking them in at night. However unintentionally, we showed them that prayer is just for kids; that faith is just a fairytale; that we grow out of prayer like we grew out of that first pair of shoes: it was cute while it lasted. Once upon a time, we prayed with our children. Show them that you still depend on God – even at your age; even with all of your success; even if nothing else could help, you would still believe that the love of Christ can lift you.
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  • Anoint your home, your block (street), your neighborhood… If we’re going to take our children back, we need all the help we can get. Living with anointing is a blessing in itself. We all know someone or have ourselves experienced the blessing of the prayers of someone else for us (thanks Grandma). Yes, the eyes of the Lord are in every place. But even if you are holy, perhaps not every one with whom you work, or recreate is. Maybe not every person in your family is a believer. Various people may be in a position to influence your children – perhaps some may have no holy sense at all. Do not limit your prayers to your family only. The oil of anointing is a symbol of the Holy Spirit. It is a sign of invitation – that here is marked a place (or vessel) welcome to Holy Spirit of God, that He may enter there and work His perfect work – and it follows that your adversary Satan is not welcome to work there.
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  • Keep your motive pure. Let the Holy Spirit lead your conversation. Do not enter these talks thinking, “I am going to change him or her if it’s the last thing I do.” First of all, you are setting a self-fulfilling prophecy in motion that the goal of these talks will be the “LAST” thing that gets done. Instead, enter these talks in faith that God’s glory will be revealed and His will done. Fill your thoughts with, “I love you” (toward the child, teen or adult, etc.). You may be surprised. When your children understand your motive, they will respond. So keep your motive pure. When our motives are pure, we remove the cloud from our communication and allow God to speak through us. Remember that no matter to whom we are speaking or at what distance from the cross they may be, God can bring anyone to exactly the place of recognition. Let the Holy Spirit lead every conversation. His results are always the most significant.
  • Search the Word for courage. If you have not already been having regular dialogues with your children about real issues, you have to wonder if there is more to the equation than their unwillingness to listen. Maybe we as parents or leaders or teachers are the stalling horse. If you need more help getting started, search the Word for courage. We read in Psalm 81:10 that the Lord said, “…open your mouth wide and I will fill it”; and again in Exodus 4:12, “Now go; I will help you speak and will teach you what to say.” These are just a few examples. When we set our hearts to speak what the Lord would have us say to effect redemption, He knows that we are people limited without His help. He also knows exactly what any and every person at any age needs to hear to prick his or her heart.
  • A brief help to lead someone to Christ. We all have a Savior in Christ. We understand that some children, teens, adults, etc. have unsaved parents; and some saved parents have unsaved children and families. This is certainly not an imbalance to ignore. Taboo talks can actually be an ice breaker for the most important decision a person can ever make – accepting Christ as Savior. We know it is the will of God that every soul be saved from destruction. Therefore, whether you are a parent or a helper in “the village,” please let everyone know the good news.
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  • Do your homework. Part of a natural resistance to certain dialogues is the fear of not having an answer to specific questions that may arise. It’s O.K. that we don’t know everything. Perhaps the world we grew up in is very different from the environment in which our children are living every day – and perhaps not. But our lack of knowledge about any topic is not an acceptable excuse to allow our children to figure out the confusing world alone. There are plenty of resources to help you learn about the topics that your children may be facing. Learn and let the Lord guide you in what to say. Understand that the Holy Spirit can pull the “message” out of any Word or words. A conversation about abstinence, for example, does not have to begin with the word, “sex.” A conversation about being an individual and not following the crowd to unhealthy habits, does not have to begin the words, “drugs” or “fighting” etc. Be creative.
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  • Pay attention. If you listen, watch, be attentive, many times our children will tell us in spoken and unspoken words and behaviors what they need to hear and or talk about. Asking direct questions can be useful, too. But listening well is required to help us know what questions to ask and when.
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  • Start Talking. The most important conversation starter is to just start talking. Open the conversation and put on your best listening ears.

References

« The Amplified Bible
« The King James Bible
« Matthew Henry’s Commentary

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Image Source: 365 Seeds of Promise by Shenica Graham.

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