Thursday, May 28, 2009

Chapter 10: The Love of a Father


the authors words in red

As this book is coming to an end I can't help but reflect on my state of mind when I first began. One thing for sure, it has been a timely one for me. 

I am so grateful for the wisdom between the pages, sprinkled with God's word throughout, this book has been a guide as my Heavenly Father has taught me some serious life lessons.

When we first began this study back in March I was battling fear each and every day, sometimes moment by moment. It had not even been a month since my heroin addicted son had been arrested for attempted robbery.  

Yet, the battle has subsided. 

Not much has changed in my circumstances. My son is still incarcerated. There are still many unknowns to his future.

Early on we discussed how God never intended for us to live in fear. As I continued to walk through the pages of this book and also peek into the lives of others walking with me. I began to grasp hold of the truth of God's word.

"For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self discipline"

With this weapon in hand, along with much encouragement from brothers and sisters in Christ. I have been able to fight the good fight and emerge victorious from the raging battle I found myself in just a few short months ago.

In this chapter we focus on God the Father. How touching to read of the moment Mitch was able to accept unconditional love from Pat. 

"Later, as I reflected on the incident, I realized that Pat mirrored the character of our heavenly Father when he vowed to always love Mitch and never let him go."

Yes, our heavenly Father is the perfect example for us as we love our children. As Paul and I have raised our children we have tried to point them to God by taking them to church, teaching them day by day. Trying our best to be witnesses for Christ. 

In spite of all we have done, the eldest of the four walked away from the lessons of his youth. In doing so he walked right into the arms of evil. Drugs took over his life. He was twisted into something unrecognizable to those of us who have known and loved him. As I helplessly watched this transformation take place over the course of four and a half years, many times I would say things like "who are you?" or "this is NOT who you are" I remember distinctly one time after a four day drug binge he had come home to retrieve some clothing. I looked him right in the eye and said "I don't know who you are anymore".  He had no answers for me, he just shrugged and left. 

Micca writes "sometimes because of things that happened in our past, we think the Lord could never love us."

This is what happened to Brett. Not only did he think that God could never love him, he also thought that we could no longer love him.

Sometimes I wonder how I would have dealt with this trial outside of the love of God. As I have walked this road I have been exposed to many different opinions on how to handle addiction. "Tough Love" is a phrase that is thrown around a lot. Often I cringe when I hear certain versions of this "tough love". Basically it is not love at all, it is self preservation. It is abandonment. 

God's love transforms. 

"The goal of God's love is not to approve of our sin. It is to transform our lives through faith in His Son" While we must suffer the cost of our actions, God is not out to condemn us. He's out to set us free from the chains of sin that bind us. Therefore we have nothing to fear."

I am so very thankful that I have not had to endure this trial with my son outside of the love of God. He is my perfect example. He has loved me with an everlasting love.  As He loves me in perfect holiness, He enables me to love my son the same. 




6 comments:

Paula (SweetPea) said...

Wonderful post, Tina.

You had me at every word, soaking in as you shared your heart.

What a wonderful transformation He has done in you...not living in fear like you once did.

I love the verse you gave. I often can recall it but I always forget the location. I'm anal about my scriptures and knowing the locations. I know it doesn't matter but my analytical mind will probably drive me straight to biblegateway.com to once again try to memorize the location of this particular verse that always escapes me. My guess would be one of the Peters or Timothys. We shall see momentarily. :-) ha

Tina said...

Paula,

LOL, I meant to go back and add the location of the scripture.. I must have forgot! I'm the same way about knowing the location. I have 26 scriptures written on index cards that God used in the early days of Brett's arrest as I was struggling to make sense of it all. I wrote them down because I didn't want to forget His direction. I am just now starting to one by one commit them to memory. My 44 year old brain does not memorize like it once did :)

You were right on... 2 Timothy 1:7 lol, I'm sure you've looked it up by now.

Thank you for the encouragement, it's good to be walking in faith again

L.L. Barkat said...

"God's love transforms." Indeed.

Lelia Chealey said...

I am so glad that God gave you Micca's book. Amazing how these studies have been such God timing for so many including myself.
I love that you are loving your son right where he is at and not turning your back on him.
Even after this study, keep in touch with me and let me know how you guys are doing. And remember...give God all your fears and let Him be your guide on this unknown journey you and Brett are both on.
Love,
Lelia
Thanks for the prayers for my little angel addition to our family. :)

katdish said...

Tina,

I walked away from God for many years and did some terrible things, but He was patient with me. I am praying. He is so full of grace and mercy.

Heather said...

Tina,
Thank you so much for your comments on my blog and your prayers.

I don't know all what is going on. Wish I did. Its just been long... I was able to tell my husband kind of where I am at... which is a step in the right direction, considering I don't really find it easy to tell him I am not doing well emotionally... especially when I can't tell him why, cause i don't know.

Anyway, thanks for the prayers.
God bless,
Heather