Someone very close to me said some things to me recently that shocked me to my very core – I felt like I had been hit in the solar plexus. For a day and a half, I was left reeling.
My husband and I were celebrating our 26th wedding anniversary the following day – we had been so looking forward to celebrating this day, and yet, when we woke up in the morning, all we could talk about is what had been said to me the day before. I alternated between feelings of great despair, hurt, anger, pain, doubt, fear and a lot of self-pity!
We went out for tea that afternoon and in between taking bites of my muffin, blowing my nose and wiping the tears off my face I picked up a small sugar packet from the table and read the following on the outside:
“If you know yourself, then you’ll not be harmed by what is said about you.”
I could hear God saying to me:
“You know who you are. Your identity is in me. I formed you. You are my child. You are beautiful and precious. . You are forgiven. You are loved by me – that is who you are”
I felt a semblance of peace return and I started to wonder why I had reacted so violently to what had been said.
I think it was because this person had attacked the most vulnerable part of who I am – my motherhood. Author, Elizabeth Stone, once commented that having a child “is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body” – being a mother has left my heart exposed and defenseless.
I was incredibly strict when our older children were younger but through the years, as God has been working in my life and I have started to heal from the pain and rejection of my own childhood and as I have come to terms with my relationship with my own mother, I have made a conscious effort to change the way I parent and I pray constantly for God’s guidance in helping me to love and disciple my children.
They had also brought up, and embellished upon, things from the past.
As I have grown in God’s love I have asked my children for forgiveness and have admitted honestly that I made some huge mistakes when raising them. I was often angry and impatient and very insecure in my role as a mother.
The attack had also come totally out of the blue.
This person had phoned me because they were really upset about something totally unrelated to what was said to me and I had been listening and empathising with them, when all of a sudden WHAM! The conversation turned without any warning and they proceeded to tell me things they thought about me that left me horrified. I did ask Steve, my husband, and one other person who lived in the house at the time and they assured me that a lot of what had been said was far from the truth.
“The emotion that can break your heart is sometimes the very one that heals it” Nicholas Sparks
I find great comfort in the above quote.
Because of God’s intense love for us, His children, He sent His son to die on the cross and broke the heart of the Holy Trinity. Jesus’s love sacrifice healed the relationship between man and God so that man will live in eternity with Him.
Marriages that start out in love, often become marriages of hate but sometimes love can restore the relationship and the marriage is healed.
Love for our children encompasses parents and yet that love often has to deal with huge sorrow and heartbreak and despair when our children are hurting or choose wrong paths, and yet, it is that very same love that can restore and heal a parent child relationship.
“ABOVE ALL, LOVE EACH OTHER DEEPLY, BECAUSE LOVE COVERS A MULTITUDE OF SINS.”
1 Peter 4:8