My boys kissing their little sister on the head. 2010 – Delaware
But when the kindness and generous love of God our savior appeared, not because of any righteous deeds we had done but because of his mercy, he saved us through the bath of rebirth and renewal by the holy Spirit, whom he richly poured out on us through Jesus Christ our savior… Titus 3:4-6
I have been struggling a lot recently feeling the weight and attack from all sides. I am raising two teenage boys, and a tween daughter and there are days I feel defeated. Like I am battling the entire world by myself. And then God reminds me I have a Savior.
He reminds me that this entire walk is about surrendering all to Him and letting Him be in control. And that for me, my job when I surrender, is to be filled up with his love and bring that love into the world.
So today I was in prayer lamenting about how the world barrages my children with everything that is anti-God. From the confusion of who they are supposed to be, to the sexualization of absolutely everything, I felt in an abyss. I felt I am fighting a fight that I can’t win because of the unGodliness is everywhere. I cannot possibly stop all of it, even though I am trying my hardest. I felt in a pit. I want for nothing more than my children to be Godly and there are just some days I feel I am losing the battle because they are bombarded with just so much stuff. I am not enough.
But God was gracious and gentle with me. He let me know He is enough. But he also showed me something very personal. He showed me one of my absolute darkest times. He showed me a memory of my post partum depression. You will remember, this was a time in my life I wanted to die because I couldn’t control the thoughts coming at me. And what he showed me was how I reacted towards my son when I had a bad thought. Please remember, I was barraged with thoughts of my child being harmed, or even that I would go crazy and harm him myself. I couldn’t go in the kitchen where there were knives because the anxiety and thoughts were relentless. So back then I made a choice with what to do about the thoughts.
I decided every time I had a bad thought I would kiss my son on the forehead. There were days I kissed him 1000 times. It was the only thing I could think to do in those moments when I felt so out of control. And God let me see this today and told me, “Susan, I am proud of you, because in your darkest hours you chose love. You chose me. If you think those children of yours won’t receive my blessing from this, then you still don’t know the greatness of who I AM.”
I was astonished that at the lowest of lows, that at my weakest when I felt worthless, the Lord could state he was proud of me. But I understood why. And as I sobbed at the memory, I let go and gave all my angst over my children to God. Because He rescued me from that pit, and He is the Savior of my children and not me. All He asks me to do is to pour love where I see none exactly in the place I am planted, and let Him take care of the rest. He reminded me that when I fail to love, which have been plenty of times, he left us confession, and His grace awaits to lift us back up again. Today was a consolation in a moment when I needed it most. He reminded me that I do not have to fix everything. He is the ultimate fixer, the one who heals.
So I act when I can, control what I can control, enlist help when I need help, and give the rest to God. Lord Jesus, I consecrate this day and everyday, my entire family to your Sacred Heart, that we may become conduits of your love in this broken world.
But the LORD’s mercy is from age to age, toward those who fear him. His salvation is for the children’s children of those who keep his covenant, and remember to carry out his precepts. Psalm 103:17-18