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Miranda Writes: Too Little Too Late

by Omar Miranda

Are you there for them?

Billy Ray Cyrus, father of actress and pop singer Miley Cyrus, admitted that he was a bad father and that his concern for his daughter was too little too late. In an interview with GQ magazine Cyrus said: “I should have been a better parent. I should have said, ‘Enough is enough—it’s getting dangerous, and somebody’s going to get hurt.’ I should have, but I didn’t. Honestly, I didn’t know the ball was out of bounds until it was way up in the stands somewhere.” Billy was talking about how his daughter Miley had swung out of control and his strong concern for her and his regret in getting her started in show business in the first place.

Interesting story from the voice of the hit song that made him millions, “Achy Breaky Heart.” Sadly, he is living out this title in his life and experience as a father, and it’s no doubt that he’s suffering. But in the end the person who will suffer most from his lack of appropriate parenting is Miley.

By now you’re probably wondering, What’s the point? I’m not a parent! Well, this story illustrates a valuable lesson: An ounce of prevention is truly worth a pound of cure. It’s clear that we as friends have a responsibility to our friends to do the best thing—which are typically the hard things—for the health and welfare of our friends.

Sometimes it’s telling our friends that the person they really like or are going out with is no good for them because they just hit on you or you witnessed them acting in a way that was inappropriate toward somebody else. Sometimes it’s telling those people we love that we’re concerned about them because they’re acting a certain way or doing some sort of thing that is hurtful to them. It’s amazing how many excuses we make for ourselves and for those we love, or how many lies we tell ourselves and those we love, so we don’t have to have those difficult conversations that in the end will be the best for our friends or family. But check out Proverbs 27:5, 6: “A truly good friend will openly correct you. You can trust a friend who corrects you, but kisses from an enemy [flattery] are nothing but lies” (CEV).*

Genesis 4:1-16 tells the story of the first murder in our spotted and stained history as a human race. This is the story of Cain and Abel. Let me give you the short version. Cain and Abel were brothers, and as brothers go, these two were total opposites. One day both Cain and Abel gave God their sacrifices, and God was pleased with Abel’s but not with Cain’s. Bottom line: Cain got really mad. He got so mad that he murdered his brother, Abel. You and I may not physically kill our brothers or sisters or friends, but think about how many times you have let your friends or family do something or become more involved with a person, habit, place, or situation that you knew wasn’t right and the Holy Spirit was smacking you around trying to get your attention to tell them that something was wrong.

Killing his brother was an unspeakably horrible thing to do, but even more horrible was Cain’s statement that reflected his attitude of pride, selfishness, uncaring, and irresponsibility toward his brother. Look at what Cain disrespectfully and gruffly responded when asked by God where Abel was: “How should I know?” he answered. “Am I supposed to look after my brother?” (Genesis 4:9, CEV). The King James Version translates Cain’s response to God’s question this way: “Am I my brother’s keeper?” Well, Cain asked a valid question, and I think the answer is a big YES!

Look at Galatians 6:1, 2: “My friends, you are spiritual. So if someone is trapped in sin, you should gently lead that person back to the right path. But watch out, and don’t be tempted yourself. You obey the law of Christ when you offer each other a helping hand” (CEV).

Many times those trapped in sins may be so deep that they may not even know how to begin the process of getting out. And I don’t know about you, but I know who my friends really are—not by how many I have when things are great, but, more important, by how many I have when things are not so great. So do your friends a favor: be there for them when they say they need you, but also be watching out for them even when they say they don’t need you. After all, the Bible tells us that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. And He’s the perfect example of how a friend should be.

So remember this: If you see a wrong thing, say something; you may save somebody from a bad thing.

Until next time, remember these things: God’s way is always the best way. Life is full of decisions, so make yours good ones. Put God first in your life, and you can’t go wrong.

Feel free to contact me: you can e-mail me at; or you can keep up with me on Facebook; or you can read more of my stuff on Miranda Writes, at; or you can check me out or send me a message at my Web site,; or you can reach me via snail mail (slow!) at the address printed below.

In Christ,
Omar Miranda, certified Christian counselor
Abundant Life Ministries
155 Earl Street
Plainville, GA 30733
Phone: 1-770-354-2912

*Scripture quotations identified CEV are from the Contemporary English Version. Copyright © American Bible Society 1991, 1995. Used by permission.

Omar Miranda is a Christian counselor with 20 years’ experience working with youth in public and private middle and high schools. He’s married and has two kids. He enjoys teaching the youth at his church, reading, writing, gardening, and camping. He’s a recovering knucklehead who spent a lot of time in the past doing stupid stuff away from God. He’s been back with God for years now and is eager to share what he’s learned from his experiences by answering any questions you may have about life, the Christian life, Jesus, spiritual matters, and relationships in his column, Miranda Writes.

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