A Moment with Myles: Fruit Trees and Ghosts

Myles reading a
new book and much

Good morning! For those of you going to ACFW this week, have a wonderful time. Be encouraged and better yet, encourage someone else! 

Come over to Living by Grace today. We’ll be chatting about the post.

And we’re off!

Last week, my seven-year old son hopped in the van with news all moms like to hear. 

“I checked a book out at the lieberry today! It’s so awesome. I’m already on chapter 6.”

He read a few pages aloud and then read “in his head” as he likes to call it. When we got home, he read a few more pages to me as homework. It all sounded fine.

I tucked him into bed, kissed him goodnight, and went to my room. About ten minutes later, I heard him holler for my daughter. It didn’t take a second before she was in my room.

“Mom, Myles is scared.”


“That book!

I went into his room. “Myles, what’s that book about?”

“It’s really good; it’s just I don’t like the front–the picture. I keep trying to think of good things but it’s popping in my head anyway.”

“What’s the book about?” I asked again.

“It’s about a girl who pretends to drown because everyone at camp hates her, but it goes terribly wrong.”

I left the room and pulled the book out of his backpack.

Are you kidding me? No wonder the child is scared half to death, and to be fair, as I researched this, R.L. Stine’s tag is “Reader beware to be scared.” So, okay. Whatever. (another post for another time)

We prayed again and then I said, “Myles, tomorrow trade this book.”

“But, Mom! It’s a great story and I want to read it. It’s the front that scares me. Maybe you could put construction paper over it so I won’t have to see it.”


Long story short, too late, he begged even the next morning to read that book. Even if I hid the cover, the story was about a girl who wanted to pretend to kill herself because she was hated and what happened was, a ghost stalked her and wanted to be her friend forever! Ick! 

I couldn’t believe how hard he fought to have something he knew wasn’t good for him, and here’s my main point:

We fight God for things we know aren’t good for us, but we like. 

To me, that book was silly. Why argue about it? But it wasn’t even a few years ago, I didn’t want to give up a particular TV show He was nudging me to. I whined. I begged. I stopped watching the show, but each Sunday night, I’d read the guide on the TV to keep up! Just like putting construction paper over the book. 

God knows what’s best for us. He’s our Father. He’ll nudge us, explain to us, and if we’re still pretty stubborn, He’ll flat out get stern if necessary, but He does it out of love.

“Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every  branch that bears fruit, He prunes, that it may bear more fruit.” John 15:2

With this in mind, stop arguing with God. Simply let Him help guide you to bear more fruit!

Have you ever struggled with giving something up you know is not good for you? You don’t have to tell in detail what it was, but share how you handled it!

14 thoughts on “A Moment with Myles: Fruit Trees and Ghosts

  1. This is a tough one, Jessica. I'm not feeling very obedient in this area. I'll be thinking about this a bunch today.

  2. Goodsebump books used to TERRIFY me when I was younger.

    Anyway – this is so true. I so often fight God on silly things that just aren't good for me. So why do I fight?

  3. Oh – do I ever need this post, Jess. We know what we're supposed to do/avoid – but we don't!

  4. JoAnne: We're a lot more like goats kicking than sheep following sometimes aren't we? lol

    Katie: I was a full grown adult (in body lol) when Goosebumps came out but I remember fourth/fifth graders devouring them. Never had I heard kids, after school, so quiet! 🙂

    Heather: Don't I know it!?

  5. Okay, cool story to share. My DD is going through a reading contest in 4th grade. Two books on the list freak her out. One is about a babysitter and a kid being kidnapped…yeah, I can see why. Anyway, she's really impressionable. Well, she asked me to get in touch with her teacher to see if she could switch the books out. Yeah. Proud moment for me. She's already starting to discern.

    And what a creepy book cover that is. Freaks me out!

    ~ Wendy

  6. Thanks for sharing the truth, Jess! Don't we all struggle with this one? For me it was gravitating toward fiction books – instead of reading the Bible. Fiction gave me an escape from reality, but the Lord wanted me to deal with the difficulties of life. I returned the 150 library books I'd checked out and concentrated on what was important. Balance is key and I learned that I needed to put God first!

  7. Um…yes, I've been there. It took Him prying my fingers away from some things and feeling the sting of that to get me to a point of finally releasing them on my own. I still struggle at times, especially when I really, really want what He knows is not good for me. But I've found if I'm obedient, my desires typically follow in time.

  8. Oh dear. I know exactly what you're going through.
    My son, in 2nd grade, has asked to read Goosebumps when we went to the library. I told him no way. I read them when I was in fifth and sixth grade. Maybe then I'll consider letting him…but I'm not sure. Now that I'm older, I know there are some really demonic premises to those books.
    Also, he just brought home a book from the school library that my husband and I had him give back. It just wasn't appropriate for him at this time, and that's what I told him.
    As for me…ummmm…yes, lol.

  9. The things that are bad for us tend to be the ones that draw us most. It's the way of the world…

  10. This is going to sound WAY silly (and I know we don't have to share details, but I'm going to anyway) – it was a BLOG! It was written by someone I know personally, but it was becoming a distraction. She had a MUCH more (in my view, anyway) successful life, and it was becoming an obsession with me that mine was falling so short. It was starting to affect how I viewed my marriage, my home, my job, and my church – pretty much my entire life.

    (Yes, I know bloggers have the luxury of only sharing the good parts, but I knew this person well enough to know that she wasn't glossing over much, if anything at all.)

    Anyway, I felt like I really needed to delete her from my Google Reader feed. Yes, I could still type in her URL, but that would require extra effort and it was much easier to block that information out if I wasn't confronted with a new post every time I logged in.

    Yeah, I wrestled with it, and tried to justify why I didn't really need to, but once I did, the change was pretty immediate in me. And now, I can occasionally read her blog again, and it doesn't phase me at all. Yeah, parts of my life still fall short of the ideal, but I'm OK with that now!

    (Well, most of the time, anyway!)

  11. Wow- I heard of Goosebumps but never really knew what it wa sabout. I hope it's not putting ideas in kids' heads to kill themselves or pretend I mean. That's scary!
    And ya. I might have nightmares tonight just seeing the cover.
    Cute pic of Myles BTW!

    It's true–at one point I gave up my writing cuz I let it take over. I learned that you really have to let go and let God. Not to get wrapped in things both good and bad.

  12. LOVE this post, Jessica! First off, creepy cover, not to mention story. Would give me nightmares.

    Second, I've also done this with TV shows I felt like I needed to give up. At first it was tough, but then I realized, I really didn't NEED to watch. And now it's not a big deal.

  13. Goodness, that cover is horrifying! I'm looking over my shoulder now!

    I used to read Goosebumps as a child, and my mother screened the books so that I wouldn't read anything too scary. You're right to make him return the book.

    As for struggling with giving up things, I used to be a HUGE consumer of secular romance novels in high school and college. As I grew in my spiritual walk, God showed me that some of the titles were inappropriate (overly descriptive scenes, lack of values, etc.) I knew I had to quit those and be more selective in what I read.

  14. Girl, I was FURIOUS at my daughter's old school for a book they let her check out last year. We had to do some hard praying, and then the book had to actually be put out on the porch before she could sleep. Insane. The things the devil wants our kids to see will creep in pretty quickly if we aren't careful…


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