Google The Unplanned Homeschooler: Whatever they've done, it will be okay

Monday, September 4, 2017

Whatever they've done, it will be okay

She's sitting on her bed, a tear rolling down her cheek, feeling completely and utterly alone. She's embarrassed, and ashamed, and she doesn't know what to do. No part of her can believe that you will understand this thing she did. Or forgive her for it. She's never done anything like it before. She doesn't even understand why she did it, or why she was tempted to do it again.

Maybe God can't even forgive her. She tries to pray, but feels so ashamed and unworthy.

If only you knew this secret she carried, you could take her in your arms and promise her it would be okay. You could reassure her that you love her, no matter what, and that God loves her even more.

His capacity for forgiveness is immeasurable, and because it is a gift that He gives freely, there is no question of being undeserving. Nothing we ever do could make us "deserving" of God's love... He just loves us because He does, even when we screw up monumentally.

If she would just come to you, you could share with her your own frailty, and your own confidence that you have been forgiven, maybe for things even worse than this horrible secret that is eating away at her. You could help her see that there are ways to make things right, and even if something can't be undone, there are ways to start over on a good path, to rebuild trust, to feel better. What can you do when you don't even know she's hurting?

God knows our hearts

I read a beautiful post this week, written to encourage other moms. It was entitled, "The God Who Sees Me." It was all about how God truly sees each one of us, and hears us, and knows our joys and our pains. There is no secret that He does not already know, and He wants us to lean on Him.

When I read that devotional, it struck me that this is the same message I have tried to instill in my own children, and yet, when one or another of them has done something wrong, something they are really ashamed of doing, they still suffer alone until the truth comes out.

And how my heart hurts when that truth does come out, not so much because of the thing they have done, because in the great scheme of things, I know that if they are seeking forgiveness, they have already learned an important lesson. No, my heart hurts because I know that they have been suffering alone, all by themselves in a prison of pain and isolation, unable or unwilling to reach out for help and solace, and there was nothing I could do about it.

Pray that God leads them out

The irony of that prison is that the door is unlocked. Pray that if your children find themselves inside it, God will lead them out, that they will recognize His love and desire to comfort them. When they make it through that door, and the truth is at last revealed, help them see that even though there may be consequences for whatever they've done, everything will be okay, and you love them.

I think far too many young people are suffering, feeling alone and completely misunderstood due to a private shame they carry in silence. I think that is why the suicide rate among teen girls is at a record high, because they are afraid that if the truth comes out, nothing will ever be okay again.

What did they do? Did they steal something? Have sex? Watch porn? Bully a friend? Take drugs? Or was it one of a million other transgressions that could leave them burdened with shame? Whatever it was, they aren't alone, and there is a way out.

Show this to your kids

That girl, sitting on her bed, scared to death that you'll find out her secret... is she yours? Or maybe your son? At one time or another, it's been all three of mine. And when I was younger, you can bet it was me, too. We've probably all been there.

How do you get your kids to open up to you about a secret they are desperate to hide when you don't even know it exists? Show them this post. Tell them how much you love them, and how much God loves them, and that you are there for them no matter what. Reassure them that if they've done something bad, there may be consequences, but you will still love them, and suffering in secret shame only multiplies their pain.

Let them read without pressure, and just pray that if there is something in their heart that needs to come out, they will see the open door. Tell them you are there to talk, day or night, if they ever want to share something with you, and then pray for the strength to follow through on that promise with patience and love.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.