How do I say what I want to say without sounding trite? If you frequent this blog at all, you know that my family has been in a state of flux for the past couple of years.
You see, we started out wrong. We started out in sin, and the sad thing is...I knew better. It's confession time. Not for my good, you see, but for the good of anyone who happens upon this blog; especially if that someone is grieving because their life is not what it should be - maybe because they accepted God's gift of salvation and misused it; mistreated it - in that they didn't go all the way and submit their life to Christ and stay on the path to the end. Maybe they acted or are acting like I did. They continue(d) to live life according to their plan. The Bible says in Proverbs 16:25 that There is a way that seemeth right unto a man,
but the end thereof [are] the ways of death, and that's where my plans were leading me.
As I've said many times on this blog, I accepted Christ as my Savior years ago -- when I was about 12/13 years old. I am now 55. I won't go into all the whys and wherefores of what brought all this about; I'll just start in 1999 where my son comes into the story. Well, I have to go a little further back for just a little background.
Before I begin even that, let me say this: Satan is not omniscient. We know that. Only God is omniscient. The Bible tells us in 1 Peter 5:8 that we should: Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about,
seeking whom he may devour:
Knowing this, I can now say that Satan found easy prey in me. I was in a marriage that was constantly in a state of conflict over things that even then seemed ridiculous to me. As I said previously, I won't go in to it all but I felt dissatisfied, unattractive, unfulfilled, and unhappy. At just the right moment in time, I was introduced to a handsome, charming, funny, and (probably mostly - if you know what I mean) sexy man who had no compunction about approaching another man's wife even though he himself was married. I believe Satan was behind that. I fell for it; hook, line and sinker. My marriage ended. My affair did not. If you can believe it, it lasted from the early 1990's until my son was born, out of wedlock in 1999. It hurts to even look back on that time in my life. It was so...ugly...and painful. But I will look back and share what I have learned in the hope that it will benefit someone else.
If anyone ever tells you that God does not answer prayer, don't believe them. I know He does because He answered mine. A prayer breathed in desperation, not really thinking He would act on it. I remember it well. I was alone, in a car, driving on a country road, feeling convicted about my actions, yet I was so addicted to the relationship I couldn't end it. I didn't want in and I couldn't pull myself out of it. I loved it. I hated it. I told God that day these words. "God, I can't do it by myself. I'm desperate. You have to do something to help me. It's going to take something drastic to end this relationship; something like a pregnancy. I know that would make him end it." I never, in my life, dreamed He would do it, especially since this man had no other children and had been told he was sterile. But God did.
Sometimes God has to bring out the big guns to get our attention. My affair did break up when my son was born for (the exact reason that I had known he would when I was offering up my prayer to God) the reason that his father's wife gave him an ultimatum: either leave her and the child alone or the marriage ends and you lose all you've worked for all these years. Yeah, you know what he chose. But I didn't stop loving him or wanting him, and about once every week, he'd sneak by to see what was happening with his son. I guess now that I think about it, the adultery continued because I still coveted her husband. It makes me cringe and want to hide now when I think about it. Bless God, He knew my heart, and I thank Him now that He still loved me and wanted my heart (after it was made right with Him, of course), so He decided to shake up my world again.
Within the space of a year three big things happened: my mom died, I was diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease and I found out that my daughter is gay. So here I am, a 44 year old single mom making a living in one of the most demanding jobs there is, selling real estate, with a progressive illness, I've lost one of my main anchors in life and I don't know how to cope with having a gay daughter with my Christian beliefs. I remember the day I fell on my face and told God to take over; I couldn't do it my way anymore. I never felt more relief in my life.
My son's father was still coming around about once a week to see him, and I was working hard to be honorable and not look with longing at him when one day he showed up and told me that they were divorcing and he wanted us to be a family. (Okay, in retrospect, here's sin #1) Without thinking about what God wanted, and more importantly, without praying and asking Him what I should do, I said yes. We were married six months later.
Also, you need to understand that my husband was not a Christian at any time prior to our getting married. I had given my life to Christ (at least as to what I understood that to be at that time) and my son had been raised in the knowledge and admonition of God. I read Him Bible stories, I sang songs about God to him every night as I put him to bed, we prayed at bedtime and dinner time together, he went to Sunday School, and he attended Christian preschool, so He was very aware of God and the importance of God in our lives on a five/six year old level.
We went from a once a week visit where my son had all of his dad's attention for the whole time they were together to living together and finding out that his Dad worked A LOT and when he was done working, he'd be tired and wanted to just sit down and watch tv all night. While he was probably thinking that he and his dad should be spending a lot of time together, it ended up that they really didn't spend much time together at all because his dad was up and out early, he was up and out to school, his dad would get home late, he'd be in bed soon after his dad got home and his dad worked weekends because he, too, is a real estate agent. Promises are broken; feelings are hurt; words are said; anger ensues, bitterness takes root, hateful feelings grow, and it perpetuates for the next six years until my son is almost 12 years old.
If anyone would have told me then that there would have been conflict between my son and my husband, I would have never believed them. But, well, there you go: six years later, we were living in pure, unadulterated hell on earth. You can read about how we ended up deciding to enroll our son in the Ohio Wilderness Boys' Camp HERE.
We are finally at the place where I can say that I can see the hand of God at work in each one of our lives through this whole thing. Sometimes I wonder how God would have worked in each one of if we hadn't been married, but then I realize that's dumb because we did make the choice to be married and God is in the restoration business (if you let Him). So, it was right for Him to be actively working to bring us all back into right relationships with Him. I just didn't see it like that at that time.
The wonderful thing that I see now is that I kept on praying everyday for God to work this out. I prayed mostly for my husband to give his life to Christ, but I prayed, too, for my son, and I kept asking God to give me wisdom on how to handle things. And so, my son ended up at Camp and my husband and I ended up taking parenting classes and listening to a CD series which at this point has been lifechanging for us both as parents!
Now, each evening my husband and I discuss what we each learned from the CD messages we listened to that day. My husband's heart is being turned back toward our son and he acknowledges Jesus Christ is the son of God and came to save us from our sins and restore us to a right relationship with God. Millimeter by millimeter I see him giving things up to God, trusting God, wanting to pray, wanting to save his relationship with his son, wanting to love his son the right way. It is SO wonderful to watch and know in my heart that it's my Father working this out, and it builds my faith and trust and love, and I appreciate Him so much more. I go to bed thankful, praising God for all He is doing in our lives.
My friend, I pray if you are living in sin, no matter what kind, that you might know that God is seeking you. He wants your heart. He wants to love you and He wants your love. He hears our prayers and He DOES answer them. So be careful what you ask for! And when you respond in faith and trust, He IS faithful and He promises never to leave or forsake you even if you are unfaithful to Him. The Bible says that "nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus". We ourselves are what separates us from God. We either think we're above the law and too good for God or we think we're useless and what would God want with us anyway. Those are lies straight from the pit of hell. We are lost, helpless and dying without God, but when we let Him take control of our lives, He uses us and We are Valuable! He is the only way, the only truth in a lying, deceit filled world, and the only life worth living (especially when you compare it to the loser life you live without him). I wish I had the words to convey the joy in my heart, the expectancy I feel each day wondering what I will learn about or from Him, the peace I have knowing that I have repented of my sins and that I have His forgiveness (BTW I did ask for forgiveness from my husband's former wife and his family). I am waiting and watching for His return and looking forward to the day when He changes me completely to be like Him. There is hope, friend. You do not have to continue letting yourself down and living life below the level of what God wants for you. Look up, Friend; open your heart and your arms and ask God in.