January 01, 2009

A Broken Family

I was looking for a pic to put up today for the 365 day challenge. I saw this that I had made up in photoshop for a photo shoot a while back. These are powerful words from the book of Song of Solomon.

I was at a Christmas gathering a couple of nights ago. One of the traditions in this group is to go around in the circle and share what our prayer needs are for the coming year. With tears in her eyes one of the ladies in the circles spoke to each of us as married couples encouraging, charging and warning us that we need to keep our families together. Previous divorces on both sides of this blended family has led to struggles with the kids who are now all adults or almost there. The affects of divorce are more than measurable in so many ways. She told us to do whatever you had to do to make our marriages work. Nothing was worth watching your children suffer from the effects of a parent walking away. We were all crying, all of our hearts breaking, because we can see what is happening with our own eyes.
As a child of a divorced mom and dad I can attest to the immediate earth shattering insecurity that took me over completely once my parents decided to divorce. It was the major factor that took me down a path of self destruction that took years to come out of. My heart hurt for my friend and her family. But God is a God of redemption and grace, and the stories are far from over, they are just in the walking away phase, I believe that there will be a walking back part of the story too, that is what I am praying for.

So with this powerful testimony fresh on my heart I heard some devastating news that a friend, not a close friend, but a friend walked away from her family recently. 4 precious young children. This friend taught my children in pre-school, I taught one of hers. I have not been able to shake this news. As I have thought about it all last night, had 3 dreams about it when I was actually sleeping, then awoke to the heaviness today, I can't help but hate the king of all liars. The Prince of Darkness. I know this young mom well enough to know that she didn't wake up one day and decide to walk away from her marriage and her children, she was enticed by darkness. There was a foothold there that Satan knew about and his plan apparently worked.

I remember when I was given to sin in my life. I totally believed that I was in control, I was living a life that was full of pleasure and power. I was living a life that had no contentment, just give me more. More of everything. Isn't that what we see preached at us from our televisions every day, in the magazines. You deserve to be happy, everything will be great if you just look out for number one. More, more, more. If I was bored I went shopping, partied, fill in the blanks. I always had to be satiated. I believed every lie, and after years of living that kind of life, the lies dropped out and I was left empty, ready to do whatever it took to make the pain go away.

That was when I was finally able to look to God. All my worldly vices left me empty and broken. The only thing that could save me was Jesus. I didn't even know it at the time, He was just my last straw. The True Lifeline.

I wondered if this friend was in contact with her Christian friends or if she just walked away from everything. It is difficult to be a friend who speaks truth in love in this situation. I can remember 20 years ago when a friend of mine was going to leave her husband and she asked me what I thought about it. I was in no place to give her good advice as I was living a sinful life at the time. I told her that if she wasn't happy that she should just leave. I can't tell you how embarrassed and sickened I am to write that now. God has never let me forget my words that day. He has etched them into my memory so I will remember the words of darkness I spoke. That day I was a pawn of darkness.

As I have been walking with Christ there have been many times when Christian friends of mine have had marriage troubles. There is a group of us girls that will get together to pray it through with a hurting woman. I have seen miracles over and over, and even when I thought that there was no hope God has softened hearts and healed wounds so deep that one would think could never be mended. I have seen people who have turned to Christ to heal there marriage come out the other side with a stronger marriage than they have ever had. All things are possible with Christ.

I pray for my friend. I pray that she is haunted by her choice, I pray that she finds no peace in her decision, I pray that she knows that her peace will be found only in Christ and that He is in the business of putting back together lives than not only limp along, but that live victoriously. I pray for a softened heart for her because each time I close my eyes I see her little girls smile and big blue eyes that I taught for a year, and how much she loves her mommy and deserves to have her family back together.

I write all this knowing that if I didn't walk with Christ, if I didn't turn to Him to fill all the empty places that no one on this earth can fill, I know that there go I but for the grace of God. Scripture plainly tells us that we need to be careful lest we fall. My friends and I have a relationship that we can call each other up and ask for intercessional prayers, pray over us in person, when there is something that hits us wrong, when there is a temptation that rears its ugly head, we call in the troops and take it seriously. We don't play with fire. I know what my flesh is made of, it led me to hell and back, I don't give it a moment to take hold. There is not one earthly pleasure that is more important than following Christ. Eternity is a very long time. Scripture speaks clearly that Jesus was tempted, but He didn't act on it. We should never expect to be so far along in our journey that temptation leaves us, the maturity that is gained through a walk with Christ is how we act on that temptation. Do we immediately turn away or do we play with the fire.

This is a long post. But this is where my heart is today.


JoAnn said...

Amen and Amen! We all need the reminders you wrote of, the preciousness of a marriage, the gift of two walking in unity towards our Lord. Thanks for your words of wisdom. Love, Jo Ann

Amber Joy said...

As always, thank you for sharing your thoughts. So much of what you said reminded me of the movie "Fireproof" which will be released at the end of the month. Recommend.

Anonymous said...

Powerful words! I have been blessed to see miracles too. I pray for your friend. DeLynda

Karen said...

Thank you, Tammy. I learn so much, every day, reading your words.

Mamma of 2 kids said...

wow! My heart is breaking bc I have a very close & dear friend that doesn't know if they want their marriage to work or not and they to have kids. Its just breaks my heart for everyone involved. I despise him for hurting God children.

Erica said...

I too am praying for the friend you have mentioned. I know Satan has a hold of her and I pray each day for her to return to her precious family and start the healing. I pray for her children who are hurting and confused. Thank you for placing some more words of prayer on my heart for my friend and her family. You are such a blessing;-)