Chapter 24 (complete chapter)
THE SUPPORT GROUP
"Because of the group, I was able to maintain my self-control during confrontations."
"I relaxed a little and didn't stay angry all the time."
"We were able to regain confidence in ourselves as parents."
"If we hadn't been coming to the group, we would have killed that boy when we caught him in our daughter's room in bed with her. We're serious! This group saved his life, and it saved us from a prison term!"
God mostly helps people through people.
The parents' testimonies about the life-preserving help that they've received in our group are in line with my belief that God mostly helps people through people. When we are going through our roughest times, God helps us by putting the right people near our pathway--people He has been preparing for years to be qualified to help us during our crises.
Praying people sometimes don't recognize God's answers because they are looking for some miracle to drop out of the sky. They need to begin to also look for a person (or persons) to walk into their lives--someone God has been preparing and wants to provide for them.
Parenting Within Reason has accomplished some incredible feats. I would like to give you a few examples.
One night, a set of parents had another major disagreement with their seventeen-year-old son. He ended up walking out of their home. Their fifteen-year-old son, angered by his perception that they had been mean to his brother, pulled a knife on his dad. A set of PWR parents took the fifteen-year-old into their home and let him cool off a night or two with them. The elder brother called his parents and wanted to come back home. Instead, they had arranged for him to stay a week with still another set of PWR parents. During the separation, they sought family counseling together, and they were reunited at the end of the week.
In another situation, a businessman's daughter had been leaning toward illegal behavior. He and his wife turned to our group early to learn how to become stronger parents. They established companionship with members of the group, and they learned some of what you've been reading in this book.
Then, their daughter fudged too far and ended up in juvenile detention. The traumatized mother couldn't stand the thought of her daughter spending a night in jail. Her natural reflex was to run and get her, kiss her, and say everything would be all right (as she had done throughout the girl's childhood). In spite of knowing Tower of Conviction 10 (We will allow our child to experience the pain of his or her own wrong choices), it seemed she would rescue her daughter prematurely.
She called one of her newly found friends in the group for support. Our veteran explained that her daughter had also been in juvenile detention (JD). She told her it was a clean facility where both a male guard and a female guard were on duty together at all times. "The horror stories you hear about jails are not true of our particular JD facility," she assured her.
This woman didn't sleep a wink that night, and people from our support group gave her companionship during her vigil. With this encouragement, the mother was