Why there’s hope for you and your kids
This is a message that’s been stirrin’ in my heart for a few, spring-shiny, country days. And one of you-all, I know, is needin’ to hear it. Now, you know me, right? I’m just gonna shoot real straight. So here goes.
Here’s what I was thinkin’ on. That part of the crazy grace of the Lord is His willingness and ability and heart for redemption. Specifically, when it comes to our past and our mistakes and all the stuff that got busted up.
For us, it was our kids.
In the early years, we parented from what we knew and believed at the time. That, and we parented from our own wounding.
Now, somethin’ about me…I can’t stand fake and complicated. Not any more. I hunger for the real and authentic. I go after truth, seek vulnerability, so when I offer my straight-up stories, I’m givin’ you a gift. When you receive them–and offer me yours, it’s a gift. (Read this a coupla times if you need to because this right here is huge.)
So. For me, I parented with too much legalism, not enough grace. Oh, I loved those boys. Kissed on ’em, praised ’em, read to ’em, all kinds of ways I expressed it, but I still had too much “law” in there and not enough “grace.”
For Mr. Schrock, he’ll tell you himself (’cause he shoots straight, too) that he was an angry father. Loved, loved, loved his boys, but too much anger. Not enough grace.
The bottom line is that it hurt ’em. It hurt ’em a lot, and they responded in all different ways. Now, those are their stories, and I’ve determined to respect that. So the part that I’m tellin’ is ours.
To take a very long and colorful story and make it short, there’s a laundry list of things we regret. Stuff we would do clear dif’rent if we could. But regret, I know, is a cruel thief, and there’s no need to spend time in his bar.
Here’s the deal. God is so mercy-full. He is so kind. God is always and ever and ever again working on our behalf. And the whole time we were parenting and working and living and hurting, He was there. In our midst and with our sons.
Where we needed breaking, He broke us. Where we needed healing, He healed us. Where we’d anchored on lies, He brought Truth. And where we needed redemption, He redeemed.
Here’s what I’ve learned about redemption. Two things, which He told me one day on the couch with my coffee.
- First, He redeems us by saving; just pulls us up out of our mess. We were the prostitutes, the slaves being sold, and Jesus the Christ, our High Bidder. Grace, amazing!
- Second, He redeems. Like a coupon? Where you trade it in for something good? Something nice? Something…better.
A piece of paper, a gift card, a certificate. That becomes a meal or macchiato or a seat. On a plane.
What my heart believes in and where my hope rests, is this–that God loves redemption, the buying back and the saving and the re-newing and re-storing, and there’s nothing too broken for Him to redeem. Even families who’ve made big mistakes.
What God buys back, He can fix. What God’s hand breaks, He can heal. What God does when we turn in our coupons (i.e., full surrender) is beyond what we can imagine.
That’s my Dad. I want you to trust Him.