First of all, I’m honored that Beth has chosen my “story”. When she asked me, I thought, sure! Then as I thought about it, I thought people won't think I have a “story”. So many people have gone through REAL stories. REAL pain. REAL loss. Well, my story was pain, loss, rejection and brokenness that was all very REAL to a 12 year old little girl. It is called Divorce.
The year was 1992. I had a normal life. Grew up in a Christian home with great parents and a younger brother. Lived the life that other people envied. We were in church every time the door was open. My parents served in the church wholeheartedly, as my dad was a youth pastor/pastor for 15+ years.
Well, as most of you know, being in the ministry is a battle. Satan is out to seek and destroy people trying to win souls for the Kingdom. That’s exactly what he did to my “perfect” family. I loved family. I loved everyone together all the time. I loved church. I loved growing up in the youth group and watching my dad/parents lead. But, something was missing. And in the missing parts, Satan snuck in. Satan started his “murder” (I call it a murder b/c that’s exactly what it is) slowly on my daddy/family. My parents went through years of struggle that finally wore down to disaster. I started noticing there were problems probably around 10 years old, the age of my oldest daughter. My parents were always pretty good at keeping things quiet from us kids, but I definitely knew something wasn’t right with the arguing that went on and I would worry. I remember the tears lying in my bed at night and the prayers I would pray. I would pray so hard and beg God for my parents to not get a divorce. I thought to myself, “this can’t happen to us because my daddy is a preacher”. I thought in my little mind, we must be safe.
Did I always walk it right? No way. I struggled once I hit about 10th grade. Regrets, bad decisions, anger, depression and a no care attitude were all evidences/results of my grief. My mom carried me through all that grief, without her knowing it at times. She was my rock through those dark days always offering words of encouragement and scriptures. I saw her studying scriptures many nights, staying faithful and just getting through.
My dad and I went through many ups & downs during those teen years, but are closer now than ever. I forgive him. He’s the dad God chose for me. 2 Cor. 12:9 says “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore, I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” What have I learned? Forgiveness. Grace. Mercy. Unconditional Love. I want to show more of this to my husband and children. God LOVES my daddy. I have never given up on him and I never will. We have all learned so much through this “murder” that took place in our “perfect little Christian church-goin family”. What have I learned? Satan is out to destroy mine too. I am NOT safe from his schemes no matter how many times I march my little family in that church building. I must be suited in God’s full armor at ALL times. Satan wants nothing more than to destroy my marriage which WILL in turn ultimately destroy my children. There is not a day that goes by that I wonder how my life would be different if my parents were still married. What would it be like if they loved each other? What have I learned? SHOW my kids that I love their daddy. Show and give my kids the confidence that we are committed to one another. Do we argue? Absolutely! What have I learned? My children have to see their parents work through and resolve conflict. And at the end of the day, their daddy and I love each other so much. In Ephesians it says “Be angry without sinning. Don’t let the sun set on your anger.” I feel in my heart that those words were written to us so that our children don’t have to go to bed with any insecurities about mom and dad.
This life experience is a gift. So, thank you Satan. Thank you for helping me have a DEEPER love for Christ and for helping me CHERISH the meaning of family/marriage the way God intends for it to be. Thank you, Satan, for making me work that much harder with a “I won’t give up” mind set of my marriage. We have 3 precious little people that were given to us as a gift and are counting on us! They need their mommy and daddy strong and in love.
I love my story. I DO have a story. God is continuously teaching and working in me and I am learning so much. I try to live life very grateful for every pain/regret I’ve endured, because it all has helped me constantly work at being a better mom and wife that HE called me to be. I am learning more about Christ’s character. It’s worth it all. Thank you Jesus.