Back Talk

One thing that is driving me batty about raising adolescents is the “back talk”. If you haven’t had the pleasure of parenting a thirteen year old yet, let me fill you in on how a conversation goes.

Mama: “We are going to so and so’s after dinner tonight”

Child: “I know” (mama finds this very interesting as there is NO WAY they knew as the plans were just made, but she let’s this go)

Mama: “I need you to get your homework done before dinner so that we can leave as soon as we are done eating.”

Child: “mmm, hmm” (rolls eyes and goes downstairs, presumably to work on homework)

45 minutes later, the mama calls the children upstairs for dinner

Mama: “Did you get all your homework done?”

Child: “I figured I would just bring it with me to so and so’s house.”

Mama: “That is not what I asked you to do. You can stay home…”

Child: “but, but, that’s not fair. I can do my homework there”

Mama: “First of all don’t interrupt me and second of all no you can’t. You didn’t listen, you can stay home and get your homework completed.”

Child: “Whatever”.

This type of interaction irritates me. Even when you deal with the sarcasm and disrespect firmly and consistently, the need to argue and do things their own way just doesn’t seem to give. Even though it hasn’t been all that long since I was that age I thought I had lost the ability to relate to this need to exert independence even when it isn’t in their best interest.

Then I listened to my pastor’s sermon on sin last Sunday.

Ouch. Do you ever give God excuses, argue with Him when He convicts of sin in your life and it’s a sin that you don’t yet want to part with. Say you are having a conversation with a friend and you mention something going on with someone else, under the guise of making it a prayer request. Gossip is sin. The Holy Spirit may convict you about this and the response may be “But, I am concerned about so and so. She needs all the prayer she can get”. Sounds familiar, huh?

I John 1:8-9 says:

“If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to purify us from all unrighteousness.”

The word “confess” in the greek (homologeo) means “to agree with, to admit”. So, what God is asking of us is not to argue or justify, but just to say “I sinned Lord, please forgive me”. Sounds so simple, doesn’t it?

I get so frustrated when my tweens are disrespectful and argumentative with me. How humbling to realize I am guilty of the same thing with my heavenly Father. He’s still working on me and now my goal is to not back talk God anymore.


  1. My 4 year old is starting to talk back to me! Putting an end to that quickly.

    But you are right, I am guilty of back talking to God!

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