Bullying. Just the word makes you disgusted doesn’t it? My heart goes out to kids who are bullied. Both, Steve and I were bullied as kids. And, it seems with social media on the rise so is bullying. In 2006 PACER established October as the national month to stop bullying. http://www.pacer.org/bullying/nbpm/
Both in childhood and adulthood, bullies target those who are perceived as weak, those who lack the confidence to stand up for themselves. As I’ve been thinking about this, I realize that the end of bullying really does begin with me. It starts when I silence my inner bully and when I dare to speak up for others who are being bullied.
Silence your inner bully
When I silence my inner bully I become less of a target to those who might seek to bully me. The same is true for you. If you don’t want to be bullied, start by silencing your own inner critic! It’s been said that the voice we listen to the most during the day is our own. (Scary thought!)
God understood how influential our self-talk is. Solomon wrote in the book of Proverbs, “For as (she) thinks in (her) heart, so (she) is” (Proverbs 23:7 AMP). In other words, the words you speak over yourself have a lot of power. If you allow your inner bully to beat you up telling you that you’ll never amount to anything because you’re not smart enough, savvy enough, sexy enough or sane enough to accomplish anything, you become a sitting duck for other bullies. Instead, why not claim God’s truth over your life. Why not use, Philippians 4:8 as the grid for what you tell yourself, “Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things.” Friend, what’s true about you? Here’s what God says is true about you, you are holy and dearly loved. (Colossians 3:12) You were created in the image of an amazing and beautiful God (Genesis 1:26) and given a divine purpose; reflecting God to the world. You can do everything through Christ who gives you strength (Philippians 4:13). You have everything you need for life and godliness. (2Peter 1:3). Friend, as you move into this new week, silence your inner bully.
Speak up for those who are being bullied
Author Frank Peretti, was bullied quite a bit in childhood. I recently watched a video interview of him where he talked about his experience and how he finally found the courage to stand up and tell someone. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ytDeXhUuSEM
Bullies usually won’t stop unless someone blows the whistle. Parents, it’s so important that you give your child permission to tell you anything. ANYTHING. They need to know that they can tell you and that you are safe. Children lack the strength and skill set to confront a bully on their own, they need help from adults. So become known as one who will stand up for those being bullied.
Even beyond children, in your place of employment, become courageous enough to stand up for those who are being bullied. Blow the whistle and stand up for what’s right.
Friend, the end of bullying does start with you and me. Silence your own inner bully this week and speak up for those who are being bullied.
I’d love to hear from you. Were you bullied as a kid? If so, how did the situation change? What have you taught your kids about anti bullying? Leave a comment.