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Published on January 30th, 2015 | by Discussion Questions

What do you do when your parents won’t support your plans?





SHELBY WRITES: I feel God nudging me toward the mission field, but my parents are very undecided if it’s worth my safety and time. They think it will be more beneficial to donate money to missions than to send me on an all-summer mission trip this coming summer. I want to do hard things, but can’t. What should I do?

SEE ALSO: What happens when you have a different dream for your life than your parents do?


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are submitted by real rebelutionaries who are looking for godly answers to tough questions and lively conversation with other young adults. You can join the conversation by commenting below. If you'd like to submit your own discussion question, email us at [email protected]



  • Liam

    I accept their decision because they probably know better. Though with your case, I would convince them that they you sincerely feel called to do missions work. They need to see that this is what God is calling you. Or maybe they do see and this isn’t the thing? I don’t know.

    In my case, everything I feel called to do my parents let me do, so I don’t have too much personal experience.

  • I know the feeling! My parents and I always seem to be at odds about various ideas and plans. A couple things I’ve learned that might help:
    1) Remember God works all for good. Even if your parents are wrong, God promises it will all work for the best. Looking back, even though I still disagree over some thing my folks did, I can see how God used it to protect me.
    2) Pray. The Bible says that God moves the king’s heart like channels of water (Proverbs 21:1), so he can surely change your parent’s ideas. Bring it before the Lord and he will help in one way or another.
    3) Remember that a “no” is not a “never”. If you can’t do anything now, start getting your ducks in a row for later – researching, planning, and thinking. You’ll just be that much closer and well-prepared for when the time comes!
    Hope that helps…

    • Kathrynne

      That helped me too! Thanks for sharing!

  • Josh A

    OK here’s my advice, but it might not be what you want to hear…

    “Children, obey your parents because you belong to the Lord, for this is the right thing to do. ‘Honor your father and mother.’ ” -Ephesians 6: 1-2a. Unless your parents are telling you to do something sinful (in which case “Do you think God wants us to obey you [humans] rather than Him?” Acts 4:19), you should obey and respect what they say.

    Hey, also check out this discussion post: http://therebelution.com/blog/2015/01/should-teens-go-on-mission-trips/#.VMuQrltKu7Q

    • Yep. I didn’t mention that in my original post, I had it implied :-) Obey your parents!!!

  • Hope

    @steelersfan08:disqus summed it up great. Remember that If God wants it to happen, he has the ability to work everything out.

  • Hi Shelby,
    It’s rather difficult for me to know what to say, since I don’t really know your situation, but I’ll do my best. :)
    First of all, as @steelersfan08:disqus said, pray! Pray that God will change your parents’ minds if this is what He has called you to do, but also pray for the wisdom to accept their decision. And don’t just pray alone! Pray with your parents. Together, ask God what He might have in store for you instead of this particular missions trip. Ask Him to bring peace to your heart regarding the decision.
    Also, if you don’t end up going on this missions trip, don’t think that’s the end of God’s calling for you. He may be calling you to this, but He may also be saying, “It’s not time yet.” Trust in His perfect timing, and trust your parents to know when that time comes.
    I’ll be praying for you; God bless!
    Christy

  • Madeleine Grace

    Hey Shelby,
    I don’t really know what to tell you but i’ll give you some encouragement. :) If you feel like God is leading you to do this than you should go. But you don’t want to go against what your parents say. pray for them ask God to show them how much this means to you. and if God wants it to happen he will give it to God put it in His hands and don’t worry. :) i hope that was encouraging :) I’ll be praying for you
    God Bless,
    ~Madeleine

  • Madeleine Grace

    And as @Christy Said If God wants it to happen then by golly it will but if not pray for contentedness and wisdom to understand God’s will if Possible :) but don’t worry or stress just give it to God :) Put it at the foot of the cross. :)
    God Bless,
    ~Madeleine

  • Sadie Clements

    Shelby.
    I am actually really sorry you’re in this situation. I know from personal experience how painful this can be.
    I agree with everyone else that prayer is important. God is faithful. If He has called you to something, than it will happen. You have to wait for His timing. I know that’s really hard–I tend to get really impatient when it comes to that–but He is good. He wants only what is best for you. Even what you’re going through with your parents will in the long run be what was best for you. “For we know that all things work together for good for those that love God and are called according to His purposes.” If it’s not a possibility right now, pray. I would encourage you to pour your heart out to God. Communicate with Him. And pray for your parents, and your relationship with your parents. That they would see God’s leading in your life. Etc.
    Also, in this situation, while you’re waiting, doing devotionals(esp. daily) does tend to help. God is able to encourage and strengthen you in this period of waiting if you go to Him, His word, and other sources that can encourage and strengthen your daily walk with Him will be incredible ways to hear His leading and seek His comfort and strength.
    Remain faithful. I remember a devotional called My Utmost for His Highest that I was reading as God revealed to me His calling on my life and I dealt with my parents’ disapproval. This one ( http://utmost.org/the-patience-to-wait-for-the-vision/ ) devotional has stuck with me. If you haven’t learned yet to walk by faith, not by sight, this will teach you how to. And if you have learned that lesson, than rely heavily on it. It not only pleases God and gives Him the glory, it also strengthens, encourages, and comforts those of us who have faith and have to wait for the vision that tarries.
    All the best, I will be praying for your situation. I know God will work in this situation in your life. I hope to hear how the story will continue sometime. :) Stand strong and God bless!

    • Ezra Walls

      Oops, I see I kind of copied you in my comment, sorry bout that. At least it’s not word for word lol. Hey by the way that’s an great point about devotionals, I love My Utmost for His Highest!
      Keep looking up.

      • Sadie Clements

        :) No problem! Mayhaps God wanted her to hear that twice. :)
        Thanks, yes, My Utmost for His Highest actually played a huge part in hearing God’s voice when I was seeking His will in my life. So, it means a lot to me . Guess that’s why I mention it so often. :)

        • Ezra Walls

          Awesome! Yeah I probably quote from Chambers more than anyone else :)

          • Sadie Clements

            I don’t know if I quote him but his devotionals definitely stuck in my head, so sometimes I remember them at just the right moment. :)

  • Haylie

    I don’t have much experience with this, but i will be praying for you, Shelby! God will always be there for you to lean on and trust, even when trusting Him seems impossible. I’ve been learning that doing hard “everyday” things is sometimes harder than doing BIG hard things. Submitting to your parents may be hard, but it’s the right thing to do, even in difficult or disappointing situations. Trust God for the grace you need to accept His will, and i have full confidence that He will :)
    -Haylie

  • T.

    I’m not the best with words, but here goes.
    A couple months back I asked a question similar to this. My passion/what I felt God calling me towards was not the same as what my parents (especially my mom) wanted me to do. At first I was praying that God would make what I wanted happen (after all I’d prayed about it and was sure it was what God wanted me to do), but I slowly changed my prayer until it became something like “God if this (my dream) truly is what you want me to do, show that to my parents and open doors. If it’s not what you want me to do, then help me to see what you want me to do instead, and give me joy in doing it.” About a month later my mom actually acknowledged that she could see I was passionate about ___ and suggested a way I could pursue it.
    I don’t know what your relationship with your parents is like, but I’m going to assume that they are Christians. Perhaps you can share with them specifically why you feel God directing you towards missions. As far as your time, what could be more worthwhile than investing in God’s kingdom? Regarding safety, “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose” (Jim Elliot). Having an eternal perspective is super important.

    I’d also recommend asking your parents if they have suggestions of something to do instead. “So, if you don’t want me to spend all summer on this mission trip, what do you think I should do?”
    The thing that helped me the most was simply praying and then praying some more. Hope this helps.
    In Christ,
    T.

    • T.

      Oh, and I highly recommend listening to the song Waiting Room by Jonny Diaz.

    • I love what you said about having an eternal perspective! :) This is something God has been showing me lately! The world places so much emphasis on things that don’t really matter and doesn’t acknowledge the things that do. All too often I find myself stressing out over things that won’t matter five minutes from now, much less in eternity. I need to learn to accept that it doesn’t matter and focus my energy on the things that do! :)

      • T.

        Thanks, Sam. I’m definitely guilty of the same thing. This world is what we can see, which makes it really easy to focus on what’s important to the world. I find that reading missionary biographies (and of course the Bible) helps point me back towards the things that last.

        • God is constantly changing my perspective through His Word :-) Also reading Foxe’s Book of Martyrs is widening my view.

  • We will not always see eye to eye with our parents or people in general for that matter. Katie Davis explains in her book that at first her parents were very uncomfortable with the idea of her doing mission work. Her mom ended up having such a change of heart that she went with Katie on her first trip to Uganda. So be encouraged!!

    My best advice to you is prayer. God can change hearts. Or it may not be the right season of your life to pursue this dream. If you feel a strong tug in that direction, maybe you should really talk to your parents. Ask them to pray with you. Maybe instead of a long summer trip, ask them to consider going with you on a short term trip.

    Hope that helps!!

  • Louis Gervais

    Pray about it–and read the Bible–until you are convinced what course of action God wants you to take. But remember, He could be working through your parents. Staying back one more summer before going on a mission trip when you really want to go is a hard thing. I’ve been there.

    Pray and seek God’s face–and oh, don’t expect God to lead you until you’ve TOTALLY SURRENDERED your plans to Him. As in: “Lord, if you want me to stay; Thy will be done.” (And you have to mean it) “Lord, if you want me to go; thy will be done.” And in His timing. Once you have fully “placed everything on the altar,” God may give it back to you and let you go. Or not, this time. But you can rest assured, His choice IS always the best choice. I’ve learned the hard way: seek GOD more than you seek a Yes or No answer.

    “God’s work done in God’s way will never lack God’s supply.” -J. Hudson Taylor

    “The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and He delighteth in his way.” -Psalm 37:23 KJV

    “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths.” -Proverbs 3:5-6 KJV

  • Pray that God would change their mind, if it’s his will. Pray that He will change yours, if that’s His will. I know you want to Do Hard Things , but maybe this is the hard thing God has called you to: not going on the mission trip but complying with your parents even when you don’t understand.

    My dance teacher (Real men do dance) would call this a training opportunity. Like physically working out, spiritual work-out isn’t easy, and sometimes, it hurts. Maybe this isn’t time. Maybe God wants you home this summer to use you in other ways. Who knows?

    I know this is hard to hear because I can sometimes feel like my parents are shooting my ideas down too, but we need to remember that they want what they think God wants just as much as you do. Sometimes it’s best to just stop trying to convince them and trust that if this is God’s will it will happen. He can do anything.

    When my aunt and uncle wanted to get married, my aunt’s dad was not so keen on the idea. He didn’t think it was God’s will, but they did. Eventually though, God changed his mind. Their willingness to wait and trust that God could make this happen if it was His will caused them to still have a good and healthy relationship with my aunt’s father but still be able to get married. So just pray, pray, pray and wait on the Lord to do the rest: either change your mind or your parents’ minds.

    • cara d

      sometimes it’s good when everyone seems to be trying to shoot your ideas down. You get to find out all the holes in them and fix it up and you find out just how serious you are about it when it comes to making it a reality :)

    • Riley H.

      Yes! Sometimes the hard thing God is asking to do is the exact opposite of what we think it is. I’m sure all of us want to get out in the world and do big hard things, but sometimes the harder thing is just waiting and listening for God’s timing and God’s will. All to say…Right on! Just curious, what kind of dance do you do? :)

      • It’s a Christian dance group called His Kingdom Come Studios. In the years I’ve participated, we’ve done a lot of dancing with swords (not real cutting swords, but wooden or plastic ones) and other various types of dancing. This year we’re doing some swing dance, and aren’t doing swords. The other dancing we do is a bit hard to classify. It’s more general just dancing not like a specific dance form if you know what I mean. But, it’s really cool, because my dance teacher teaches both guys and girls and we do the performances together but all our normal dance classes are just guys (except for the teacher). It’s nice to know that there are other guys who actually want to dance!

        • Riley H.

          Very cool. Sounds interesting, and fun :). I think swing dance would be a blast. And dancing with swords…never heard of that before, but it sounds cool! Yeah, you’re definitely not the only guy out there who likes dancing! Waita pursue what you enjoy and not worry about what everyone else is doing.

    • Btw. most of this was taken from something my dad said to me when I was in a similar disagreement with him.

  • Skitterson

    Hey, I would just say, pray about it. Pray about it with your family. Pray about it with your church. Pray about it with your friends. God sure has a way of making His plans known, just listen to what He has to say. It’s very possible He doesn’t want to go, and it’s just as possible He does, but I can tell you, you probably won’t feel very comfortable on a mission trip all summer when your parents don’t even want you to be there. The Bible says honor you parents, so I’d say, pray with your parents and see what God has to say. I definitely think you and your parents should be on the same page in this. Also, if you’re worried about your safety, I would say, trust God to protect you.

  • cara d

    also, if you’re interested in any kind of telling people about God in any way at all, I recommend listening to ‘Depraved Indifference’ by Eric Ludy and see if you can go away uncaring. You can find it on youtube here:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UWHJ6-YhSYQ

  • Ezra Walls

    Hey Shelby,
    First off, thanks for sharing ’cause I think more than a few of us run into this occasionally :) I agree with @liv737johnoxide:disqus about the way you use this difficulty. Not to pick your words apart, but I would be careful about saying, “I want to do hard things, but can’t”. Now I don’t have ESP, but God probably is not going to limit you to one opportunity to do hard things. For one thing, he commands that we obey our parents, and when there is a doubt it is always best to stick with what He has told us clearly over something that is questionable. Not that your calling itself is questionable or unsure-it may be very sure- but the timing can be tricky sometimes. I would encourage you to await the Lord’s timing with patience, and when you can’t head overseas, do the next best thing…maybe ‘the uttermost part of the neighborhood’ is a good place to start :) Devote yourself to prayer, and make it clear that you desire His will above your own. Our powerful Heavenly Father knows your struggle, and He will put you where He wants you, when He wants you there- you can’t rush Him. Here’s a verse that I pray will bring you some encouragement: “Commit your way to the Lord; trust in Him, and He will act, making your righteousness shine like the dawn, your justice like the noonday.” -Psalm 37:5-6

    Keep your chin up…He’s working for your good!

    God Bless

    • Kathrynne

      Thank you. This insight helped me see much more clearly.

  • Karen Inguengan

    Hi Shelby,

    I understand what you’re going through, and I’ve been there during my senior year in High School. It was difficult, to be honest. At first to me, I think my parents have been a hindrance to what God has laid upon my heart. I thought that they do not understand my passion, even though I’m open to them. They said no. Then suddenly tears flowed out from my eyes without even noticing it. I cried to the Lord that evening. As much as possible I was avoiding to ask God why. But instead I sought counsels to people whom I know will help me, and shared my passion to those few who are very dear to me.

    As time passes by, I came to realize that I was just looking from a different perspective. I was reminded of a Bible verse in Ephesians 6:1, “Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right.” I have been memorizing that since I was a little kid. However, that verse is not only limited for “children” alone. Instead, to all of us. I’m still a child, meaning under the authority. I have someone over me whom God placed–my parents.

    There are so many things that I need to learn and so many things I need to go through to prepare me for those great things. Instead of looking at them as a burden, I am slowly, but surely, getting the picture that God Himself placed them in authority for a purpose. I love my parents so much. We have been serving the Lord in our local church together. They experienced so many things with regards to that and have been through situations. I know God has given them the wisdom, and I trust that that is what God has placed upon their hearts right now.

    Although I may not understand why they didn’t somehow consider my desire in the ministry, I know God is in work. The Lord has led me to a different path. He has given me a task here in my own Jerusalem, college, and that is to be a light for the lost. Though it may be difficult, living for our King is such a wonderful privilege no matter where we are! Continue to pray and seek His wisdom and direction. Always listen to God’s voice, which might also mean obeying your parents. You may never know how God can work in their hearts. Just trust and obey.

    In Christ,
    Karen :)

    • I hope you don’t mind a quick question, but I thought it might help me understand something better. I’ve heard a lot of people use that verse from Ephesians as reason for always obeying your parents, no matter what age. When you said that you were still a child, did you mean that age-wise you were still a child, or that you were still a child in the sense of what the verse was talking about, and thus always obligated to obey your parents?

      If you meant the second option, would you mind explaining why you think that? I guess my question is: Do you ever outgrow your parent’s authority? If you feel God tell you x when you’re 12 and your parents tell you no, obviously it’s God’s will for you to obey your parents. Is that true at 17, 25, 55? I’ve known several people who thought that, and I’ve always been curious about why. Thank you very much! Please pardon my late question!

      • Karen Inguengan

        Pardon for my late response. What I meant by obeying as a child, I was referring to what the verse is trying to point out, not based on age. Yes, we could never outgrow our parent’s authority unless if they’re gone here on earth. The Bible didn’t point out any specifications regarding age or class to obey our parents. (Proverbs 23:22) It is true though that this commandment is hard to follow for some, but to others, it’s not that much. But hey, the Lord is there to help us! Our parents have so much knowledge and wisdom based on experience. Irregardless of age, we are commanded to honor them, and this brings fruit in our spiritual life and a relationship worth for keeps.

        • While I disagree, thanks for responding! I appreciate your stating your reasons for your belief!

          • Karen I.

            Hey! Might as well ask the reason why you disagree? I just would like to know why. No pressure, okay? Thanks!

          • Well, I would say that I disagree that Paul was speaking to all ages when he said “children” in Eph. 6. I realize scholars debate both ways about how that word should be interpreted from the Greek (because it could be interpreted “little child” or it could be interpreted “offspring”), but in my personal opinion, it means “little child.” Why? Because that is the interpretation that holds most consistently with the rest of Scripture.

            For example, Matt. 10:35-40, Jesus tells us that He has come as a sword to divide families against each other (speaking of our duty to follow Him and love Him more than any other relationship) and in Lk. 9:61-62 Jesus tells a man (with an ungiven age) to follow Him without bothering to speak to His family, much less get permission from His parents.

            Don’t mistake this for flippancy toward my parents, please! We are commanded to “honor” our parents for as long as we live, but as Christians, we have a higher obligation than to obey them forever. You and I, as believers, will answer to our heavenly Father for our actions here on earth, not our physical father.

            And hey, feel free to point out anywhere you disagree or any blatant mistakes I made in this comment! As you said, no pressure!

          • Karen I.

            I see your point. How about a scenario for better comprehension. :)

            Let’s say you’re a Christian and your parents aren’t. Your father strongly prohibits you to go to church (irregardless of culture). What will you do? Will you disobey your dad and go to church, or will you respect him as your parent in authority?

            If you choose the first one, then you’ve dishonored your parents, which is stated in Proverbs 1:8, 15:20, 23:22, and in 30:17, to name a few. If you do the latter, then you’d be forsaking the assembly, as according to Hebrews 10:25.

            So what does this point out? It pertains to your value of priority: to love God (above all else) or to love our parents (take note, ABOVE God). This is also stated in the verses you’ve mentioned in Matthew and Luke. You’re right about that as God’s children, we have a higher obligation than to simply obey our parents, that is to love God, and YET at the same time, expressing the right attitude in following Jesus.

            Can you still honor and love God by obeying your parents? I would say YES to that. And I’ve already stated my thoughts about it in one of my previous comments and will state a few in the next paragraph.

            Privilege does not come without responsibility. Going to church is a privilege. Having a ministry is also a privilege. So meaning, these have to go through keeping us responsible for little things. For example, ministry. Before God blesses you with a certain ministry, He will let you go through certain tests. He will hold you accountable with little things before He can even give you greater things, right? Same thing applies to home, to academics and to other areas of life. But anyway, what I mean is that these verses were written harmoniously IN context, and shouldn’t contradict fellow Scriptures.

            Also, if you’re saying that the word “children” in Eph. 6:1
            refers to “little child”, so this means that the promise in verses 2 and 3 is only limited for little children, literally? What about adults? Again, keep in mind that the Bible speaks for itself, and clarifies Scripture after Scripture. Kindly refer to it again and see how it gets along with other references in the Bible. :)

            Personally though, I do not want to go into any manner or form of debate because the Bible is not written by God to be argued. But rather it should be shared in truth. I’m not being aggressive or anything as I type all these. I just wanted to clear things out via Scripture for deeper understanding.

            I hope you get what I mean. Hehe. :)

          • Okay, I think I understand better what you meant! In an effort not to get into a debate, I’m not going to make a long rebuttal. I just wanted to put a thought out there.

            If there is a conflict between authorities, I believe our ultimate duty is to be true and obedient to Jesus Christ. When throughout history, the many young martyrs have been ordered by their parents to give up their faith, I believe their clinging to the truth despite their parents is an illustration of my point here. Really, it comes to Peter and the apostles response to their authorities who told them to stop witnessing in Acts 4:19 and 5:29, where they say, “We ought to obey God rather than men.”

            I will look at the Scriptures you named, and I appreciate your willingness to discuss this with me! I’ve learned from it! Thank you for your gentleness and friendliness in our discussion! I hope to see you around on other Rebelution articles!

          • Karen I.

            You’re welcome, Taylor. Of course, God should absolutely receive all the honor and glory in whatever we do, wherever we are. Thanks, as well. At least we get to understand the meaning of these verses in one way or another.

            Just remember, Bible for Bible. Only God can give us the wisdom we need to understand Scripture, and the Holy Spirit is here within us to interpret it. No human being can ever fathom the wisdom of God. It is so great that it shows our need to depend on Him all the time, even a verse as simple as Eph. 6:1.

            May He help us live these truths out for His honor and glory alone. God bless you! :)

        • Would you be interested in discussing this idea with me a little further? I know some people enjoy discussions like this, and others do not, so I thought I’d ask! If not, no sweat! Thanks for the response!

          • MimeforJesus :)

            I’d Disqus this with you! :) I’d just be discussing it, as I haven’t
            really formed much of an opinion on when a person is out from under the authority of their parents. But I’d enjoy
            researching this and talking about what you think.

          • Alright, I don’t have time at this exact moment, but I’ll comment my belief this evening! Thanks for doing this!

          • MimeforJesus :)

            This’ll be fun!

          • Alright, here’s my personal belief. I’m not sure I would draw a direct line/age when a child comes out from under his parent’s authority, but it certainly (if not before) takes place at marriage, when we are commanded to “leave our father and mother”. My personal leaning is toward about the time you can discern God’s leading for yourself is pretty close to the time you begin to be responsible to God for your own decisions instead of dependent on your parents to interpret for you.

            Honestly, Jesus makes too many statements in Lk. 9:57-62, Matt. 10:34-39, and Lk. 14:26-27 that I can’t ignore that reflect radical submission to His leading above every other human relationship, so much that our love for Him should make our next closest love look like hatred and He proclaims that He brings a sword to divide families.

            So, I would say as a child, it is God’s will for you to obey your parents. As an adult, it is your job to honor your parents, but at times respectfully disobey them. Your first duty is to God.

            In regard to Eph. 6, there’s a disagreement among different people about whether child means literally a child or anyone under authority. My personal opinion is that it means child, because it does say child and I find that more consistent with the Scriptures I named above.

            Do you have an opinion on the subject?

          • MimeforJesus :)

            Hmph, well… we seem to agree. I think that a person’s not under his/her parent’s authority when he leaves the house permanently/for college.

            This will be a short conversation, I can tell!

          • Ha, ha, yep, seemingly. I agree. Bummer, I was hoping for a long involved discussion here! :) Oh, well, maybe another time!

          • MimeforJesus :)

            Yeah… Say, did you see my post on Revive about guys… talking? I’d appreciate your input :)

          • Yeah, I saw it. I did respond, but I’ll respond again here.

            “Hey, guys, this isn’t really an appropriate conversation topic. Could we talk about something else?”

            “Could y’all drop this? I’m not really comfortable with this topic.”

            “Hey, y’all, that’s not really polite to talk about, particularly in front of girls. Can y’all drop it?”

            “Hey, rudeness, cut it out!” *kick in the shins*

            Okay, I just tossed that last one in for fun, but the others are real. It’s amazing how often a kick in the shin will fix things…

            Any other questions?

          • MimeforJesus :)

            Ohhhh, the kick in the shins made me laugh. :)

            *Still laughing…*

            *Still laughing…*

            Okay, here’s a topic. Is it appropriate to compare war to h*ll? Like, in literature? ‘Cause I’ve got a poem where it fit in really well, but I didn’t know if it is sacreligious…

          • MimeforJesus :)

            And I’m still laughing, fyi. My family is about to declare me certifiably nuts!

          • Personally, I don’t think it’s wrong to. I know people who do and
            won’t use that word for anything, but I can understand its use. For
            example, h*ll literally is the complete absence of God. So to someone
            who has seen war and feels as if its appearance is that of a place
            devoid of God, he*l seems like an apt comparison.

            I’ve used the
            word occassionaly (actually, I just used it to describe a situation in
            an email not two minutes ago) to describe an absolutely horrific
            situation, but I think it’s admissible to compare something as horrible
            as war to h*ll.

            Sorry about the weird format here. I accidentally messed up my original comment, and now it’s waiting for moderation. So, I copied and pasted what I wrote over here (with the adjustment) but it came out weird. Sorry bout dat.

          • MimeforJesus :)

            You’re fine! :) Okay, that’s what I was thinking. It is a horrific situation… I guess I’m from one of those families that doesn’t say h*ll.
            What situation were you describing? Anything I can be praying for?

          • Hmm, you actually already are. Lauren and I were talking about Carson’s prayer request on Revive.

            Yeah, my family doesn’t use it either, and I don’t in normal conversation. Sometimes it just seems appropriate though (no pun intended). I want to go to Sudan and Somalia when I get older and I’ve already spent time in Africa. It’s hard to find an apt metaphor for that sometimes.

            It really does reflect the seeming absence of God from a situation, if you understand what I mean. He’s not literally absent, but from all external appearances you think He is. When I read about the genocide and slavery in Sudan or Somalia, there’s not really a good word on earth to aptly describe it.

          • MimeforJesus :)

            My mom says I need to go. She’s directing our homeschool group’s graduation, and I’m helping her. And it’s tomorrow. So… talk to you later! :)

          • MimeforJesus :)

            I think I understand :) Thank you for sharing your views!

          • MimeforJesus :)

            fyi this made me start laughing again… I’ve got to tell my friend about this.

          • Ha, ha, I’m glad it was funny. Sometimes it’s just appropriate! You’re just thinking, “What are you thinking?” I had another guy strike up a similar conversation with me the other day. Luckily he got the idea just from my quietness that I didn’t like the topic, and he was polite enough to change it quickly.

          • MimeforJesus :)

            Yep, next time I see these friends they’d better watch out for their shins! 😉 Okay, so there are guys who don’t talk like that. I was getting worried! Thank you for restoring my faith in y’all :)

          • Yeah, most of the guys I know don’t talk like that. Don’t worry, we’re not all bad!

          • MimeforJesus :)

            Well, thanks. I was really surprised that these guys were talking like that, but… I thought, if they did, what made any of the other guys I knew different?

          • In my opinion, attractiveness is a very, very unimportant issue. Heck, if it were really important, I’d be in pretty bad shape! There are times you can’t help but have those thoughts, but you can certainly control what you allow to stay in your mind and even more what you allow to come out of your mouth. It’s simple self-control.

            Usually, ALL guys don’t do anything, nor do ALL girls do anything. We tend to assign certain habits or behaviors to one or the other of the genders, but it really depends on the individual. Anyhow, I’m glad your faith is restored!

          • MimeforJesus :)

            Yeah. Why is it such a big deal?
            Oops, I forgot… *facepalm* of course not ALL people do the same things!

            ttyl, I’ve got work at 7:00 tomorrow…

          • Yeah, I have an SAT at 7:45. I should probably head to bed too.

          • MimeforJesus :)

            How do you think you did?

          • The English part was insanely easy. The math part was only ok, , so we’ll see how my score was. I don’t think I did badly, but I didn’t ace the math section.

          • MimeforJesus :)

            Yeah, the English part is easy. (Did you have to do the new essay format?) The math section scares me…

          • I don’t know how new it is… they gave me an essay question, and I had 25 minutes to write an essay on it. I can’t say what it was, but if you write at all it shouldn’t be overly difficult.

          • MimeforJesus :)

            Okay, that was the old style. The new way is, we read an essay and then write an essay analyzing it. Aaaaah!!!

          • Oh, I like the old way! After six months of blogging, writing a simple essay isn’t that hard!

          • MimeforJesus

            Yes, indeed! It’s so different.

          • How’d the graduation go?

          • MimeforJesus :)

            It went great! :) No mess-ups that my mom could have avoided.

          • Glad to hear it!

          • MimeforJesus

            Again, I’m laughing :)

          • Ha, ha, classic Taylor advice! You’ll remember this 30 years from now when some young teenage girl asks you for advice. You’ll just say, “Kick him in the shins!”

          • MimeforJesus

            Yep. I’ll be an old grandma someday and I’ll say, “Well, dearie, I can only tell you what a good friend told me years ago: say, ‘hey, rudeness, cut it out!’ Then kick him in the shins.” Then when you’re done laughing, try some thing else.

  • This is something I’ve faced since as long as I can remember, and still face. Even though I’m an adult and living in a completely different continent from my parents, there are still some pretty major areas that we disagree on, including relationships and my career choice and what I get my masters in. And the Bible does ask us in the book of Romans to “as much as possible, live at peace with all men”, and also that we need to honor our parents. I have really struggled with the balance of “honoring my parents” and “living my life doing what I think God’s will is for me.” I know this doesn’t give any help at all, but please know that you aren’t alone in this! Many prayers!

  • Wow I understand so much! This was me just a year a half ago when I was preparing to go on an eight month mission trip and didn’t have my parents’ approval. What your parents think is important and often accurate. I know before I went, the disapproval from friends and family made me pray harder and plead to God that He reveal His will for me in a new way. I told God that I did not feel comfortable going on without my parents’ support and I asked Him to do a miracle and change their hearts if He wanted me to go that year. (I was 19 years old. My parents and friends all thought I was too young and unprepared.) I continued to pray and I even began to fast. After four months of praying, waiting, and continuing to express my desire (patiently) to my parents, my parents experienced a change of heart. Just two weeks before the application papers were due, my parents said that they would support my decision. I left to Peru with total peace in my heart and my parents were my biggest cheerleaders and encouragers throughout the whole thing. Surrender your wants to God and ask Him to do His will through you and not your own. Mission trips are hard spiritually, emotionally, and physically. You will need support while you are there and when you come back. If God is calling you, He will give you peace. When you have His peace, look at His face and not at the challenges that may arise or obstacles. He will take care of the rest for you.

    • That’s so cool how God used your parents to prepare you for the difficulties of missions! :-) God’s timing is absolutely perfect!!

  • Eva H.

    Whenever I’m in a difficult situation, although I haven’t experienced the exact thing you are going through, what comforts me the most is that God is sovereign over EVERY circumstance in our lives. He is not unaware of what’s going on with you and your parents, and He will give you an answer if you continue to pray about it. But that answer may not be exactly what you were looking for. It might not even be His will for you to go on this trip, but it also very well could be. If He wants you to be there, He will open the door and open your parent’s eyes to see that.

    I also know that God tells us to submit to our parent’s authority. He put them in our lives as our guardians for a reason. So pray, and pray lots that He will make it clear to both you an your parent’s what His plan is for your life.

  • Kathrynne

    Hey, just to encourage you I feel called to be a missionary too. In the place I feel called to a college degree would be extremely useful in getting a job and a visa. It will set me back for 4-6 years but I will be more prepared with a degree and I will have all this extra time to mature and get advice from mentors and grow more in my leadership skills. I may also have more time to gain support for my mission work.

    Hope this helps.

    • Clare

      Hi Kathrynne, thank you so much for sharing that, I’m having to make a lot of big decisions right now and your comment was very encouraging to me. College is a really difficult area for me to honor my parents in bc I am not… academically gifted:) But I know it really enable me to better serve in the long run due to everything you mentioned, and that if God wants me to have a degree, I know He will enable. Thanks so much!

  • MH

    It is so cool that God has placed this dream on your heart and it is awesome that you have a heart to do hard things! I think that you can be very encouraged because you actually have an amazing opportunity to do a hard thing right now. Sometimes (most of the time) waiting on the Lord is super, super hard, but you can rest assured that just like Abraham and Sarah, God is looking out for your best and will not forget his plan for you!
    Go get ’em, Shelby! God is so going to give you the strength to make it through this in a way that glorify him!

  • God commands us to obey our parents, but their is a point when that commandment no longer applies. Yes, you should obey your parents, but if you feel God is calling you to something -I mean, really believe it- and what your parents are telling you is controversial to what you feel God is leading you to, that’s when you are relieved of the obligation of obeying your parents. Am I saying it’s permissible to disrespect the authorities God has placed over you? Absolutely not. Sometimes my parents make decisions i don’t particularly like or agree with, but I continue to respect them, because I know they are doing the best they can to raise me according to God’s leading. I love my parents, I respect my parents, but if God was calling me to be a missionary and they weren’t supportive of the idea, I would do it anyway and trust that God would work things out. If you really believe God is calling you to do something, you do it, no matter the cost, and trust that He will take care of the rest. My cousin and her family are moving to Uganda as missionaries and when making this decision, one of their biggest concerns was that her husband’s parents would not support the idea. So they went and told them about their decision, fully expecting to be put down by his parents, but when they got there, before they even said a word his Mom said she already knew. God had spoken to her and told her this was right. This is what they needed to do. You do what God tells you and let Him take care of the rest.

  • Joey

    As Abby said the bible does say “Children respect your parents” but is does say this as well “Parents do not provoke your children to wrath.” If your parents are provoking you and causing resentment then pray to God every moment you think of it. But if you don’t think your parents are provoking you THEN STILL PRAY!!!! Listen, God appoints us to our families for a reason, we need to trust them even when its hard. I know you said you feel he wants you to do this, but theres a difference between “feeling” and “knowing”. So don’t rebel against your parents until you KNOW that God is calling you to do this. Not going may be your “Do Hard Thing” right now. remember God put fathers and mothers over us for a reason.

  • Elizabeth Marie

    Wow, Shelby, I can so relate! This comment might be a bit long but… here’s my story…

    Our stories are almost identical… I was that girl who at the age of 7 dreamed of being on the “mission field.” My parents DID encourage me, but only in ways that were within their comfort zone. When missionaries visited our church, my parents would encourage me to “pick up whatever materials they had” and “talk with the missionaries”… asking them about internships or upcoming short-term missions trips. But NEVER did they sign me up for or send me on a missions trip. For years this went on: I would present missions opportunities to my parents and NOTHING ever came of it… My parents were proud of me and even told others about my dream. Many nicknamed me “the missionary”… thinking they were encouraging me. But I hated it! Without knowing, they mocked my dream! I cried myself to sleep… the only comfort I found was in dreaming of the day I no longer needed my parent’s permission “to go into all the world and preach the gospel!”

    Also during this time I supported a missionary from our church and wrote her letters occasionally. She and I became pen-pals: she would share the latest news from the mission field and I would pray and send support! She would constantly ask when I would come join her. This paired with my parents complacency only intensified my appetite for serving on the mission field.

    Then one day a friend of my aunt (who knew of my heart for missions) sent me an e-mail with info concerning an upcoming missions trip. I scanned the e-mail with a mixture of excitement and dread… knowing that this missions trip info would probably end up on the “hopes dashed pile” like all the others. At first I decided to just forget about it… but something told me to give it one last try. So at the dinner table one evening I mentioned it. And sure enough the conversation went just as I had expected. My parents asked the usual questions about the details of the trip and encouraged me to gather whatever details and let them know. My heart just plummeted! I snapped! I could no longer stand “being given the run-around!” I put my head in my hands and just wept in front of my parents! I told them how I felt. All that I had been holding in came out! I finally ended my rambling with “There’s no need to get further info if there’s no chance of me going on this trip!” They just stared at me as if they were seeing my heart for the first time. My parents later told me that by seeing those tears streaming down my face, they could see how important missions was to me and they knew they had to let go of their fears… they knew GOD WAS IN CONTROL!

    Needless to say, I went on my first missions trip. It was an amazing experience and the LORD was at work!

    Now if you can glean anything from my experience… 1) DON’T GIVE UP! Keep asking your parents if you can “go” and pray that the LORD will work on their hearts. 2) BE HONEST! Share your heart with your parents (tears and all). Sometimes they just don’t see things the way you do. 3) BLOOM WHERE YOU’RE PLANTED! Even if you have parental roadblocks, redeem the time you have at home, school, church, or in your community… you don’t have to be overseas to share GOD’s love. While you’re in this “waiting room”, study the Scriptures and Pray. Discipline yourself so that you’ll be ready when the time comes. 😉

    • Emily Brownlee

      I have the same parent-complacency problem! They always encourage me to pursue my dream of science (and music) but if I ask for something that might cost a little too much money, or is too hard to organise, my parents kind of avoid the subject. It’s infuriating. I love my parents, of course, but this attitude towards ambition is totally maddening and I am SO glad I’m not the only one with this problem! Thanks for sharing guys!

  • Renee

    RRAY

    • Emily Brownlee

      Do you pray for a change in your parents’ attitudes or minds, or do you pray for a different ambition, or for a series of circumstances that would basically make your parents accept your calling?

      • miriam

        Pray that God’s will be done regardless of the circumstances. Pray for ultimate assurance and peace of what He wants for you. Get to know Him in order to know His heart. Set aside prayer time even amidst difficulty and suffering and it will pay off in the long run. Nothing is wasted, even our frustration, anger, bitterness, or sorrow.

  • Sydney

    I have the same situation going on, Psychology sparks my interest, but my parents feel it would be hard on me physically as well as mentally. Sometimes I wonder if maybe they are right that I can’t handle something that requires carrying patients’ emotional baggage daily. God hasn’t given me a full idea of where my talents fit best yet, He wants me to explore, and explore I will.

    • Clare

      Wow that’s great Sydney! My cousin is in psychology, it looks hard but very rewarding:)

  • Lk. 14, “If any man comes to me, and hates not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.”

    My mother struggled deeply with the idea of me going to the mission field (I too feel the “nudging”), but God gave her peace about it during my first missions trip. So, first, pray that God would perhaps change your parents hearts if it truly is His will for you to be on the field.

    I would encourage you that God must be our first priority. Obviously, without knowing your situation, I’m not telling you to absolutely go against your parents, but our first duty is to God. When we follow Jesus, our allegiance and obedience to Him must come before all human ties. It’s tough, I know!

    Sorry I’m so late to the show!

    • Clare

      Thanks Taylor B that was very encouraging. I’m praying about going on a rather extensive missions trip and my mom is very supportive (very thankful for that) but I can tell she’s not exactly overflowing with enthusiasm. I need to pray that God would give her peace and confidence. Thanks!

      • I’ll be praying for you, Clare. I can definitely sympathize with how tough it is. “Not exactly overflowing with enthusiasm”; been there!

        • Clare

          Thanks Taylor B, I really appreciate it:)

          • Hey, Clare! I’ve been praying for you! Is there any update on the situation?

          • Clare

            Yep! By God’s grace, I am interning in the field that I believe God has appointed me to, working at a children’s home as a house mom. It has not been easy for my family or me, I love my family so much, but God’s grace is sufficient. I pray that my younger siblings would understand that this is not about ‘other kids’, or a different place, but about God, that He is so worthy of our lives. Thank you so much for your prayers, that really encouraged me today.

          • I’m so glad to read this! I’ll continue to pray for you in that field, and I’m sure your siblings understand, even more as they get older!

  • Dolly

    Hi Shelby! First of all, I get what you are saying. You want to honor God and help people. But then I also get what you parents are saying. They want you to be safe. Though it may seem a generic answer, just pray. If the Lord wants you to go out, an opportunity will arise that is undeniably God’s.
    In the mean time, I will also be praying for you. God bless!

  • MimeforJesus

    :) Yep!

  • MimeforJesus

    That might not be so great… y’know?

  • I have the same problem. I think it’s the same as other people have been saying-trust God, pray, and know that if it is His plan for you to go, He will work out every detail. :)

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