Our son and his friend were going on trip of a lifetime, a two week vacation in Tokyo. Beholding all the sights and sounds of a rich culture, not to mention it being an electronic mecca. A virtual treasure trove of all things “arcadic” that would be video arcade + archaic = arcadic my creative liberties for the day. If anyone knows me in the ever so slightest way they would know this was not going to be a cake walk on my part. In all the years of being a mother I have battled fears, foreboding thoughts of possible abuse, kidnappings, accidents or sicknesses and all the alarming stuff in the middle. In fact, if you can name it I probably have feared it. Been there done that.
Any loving mother no doubt has combated most of all of these same fears for her children. It is a natural desire to nurture and protect our babies no matter how old they are. However, for me it went far beyond normal trepidations that come from a caring parent, but rather becoming irrational and larger than life ones. Going so far as to crippling me from releasing our sons to go anywhere with their dad or anyone else. Words cannot begin to express how incredibly hard this was for my husband, children and even me.
Now looking back, and having come to greater depths of healing in this area, I marvel and am utterly humbled that Kevin stayed married to me. Through those layers of painful growth came revelation to why my fears where at critical mass, some were fostered from past personal sexual abuse I was aware and unaware of. Buried deep, pushed down by stratum of shame, denial and trauma, manifesting itself through unhealthy behaviors. Perhaps some came from being carried in my mother’s womb only three months after burying her 9 month old son Brent, he died unexpectedly from compilations due to anesthetic from what was suppose to be a routine hernia surgery.
Personally, I cannot fathom my mom’s fears and grief as she carried me… what a bitter sweet time for her. It’s important that I make this very clear, I’m in no way blaming anyone for my behavior, we all have personal choices to make regarding what we with do with what has been given us. For whatever reasons my fears were real, intense and even when prayers like, “God has not given me the spirit of fear, but of power, love and a sound mind” * did not bring complete relief; I would want to run away from the visible pain that I was causing my husband and children. Fighting my fears seemed fruitless, freezing up and paralyzing so my only final option was to flee. Fortunately these were only fleeting lies, for I knew I could never ever leave my family that I love so dearly.
Today, I’m so thankful to God who has shone me His perfect love that casts out fear, for my husband and children that endured the strain of my intense struggles for freedom with their love and forgiveness. Plus, where would I be without the love and support of mentors / friends that have also walked with me through it all. And though they did not wrestle the same degree of debilitating demons as I, they chose to stand by me in my brokenness. Loving me without judgement, offering me compassion and grace that became a breeding ground for my healing. Whenever I mustered up strength to take a baby step they applauded with such exuberance you thought I had run a marathon being the first to break the finishing line ribbon.
My boys are grown adults now and yes I still worry too much I know. It’s hard to know what is normal when your pendulum has swung so far in the opposite direction. I do know I’m walking in more freedom than ever before and I’m trusting God that it will only increase.
Currently, our son Derek is thoroughly enjoying Tokyo, a dream of his fulfilled. Counting down the days to see him and hear of his grand adventure. Mindful of my tradition to keep a memento, a dated trophy if you will, of how God helped me walk in peace as my children soar to new heights. Just like I did many years ago by saving his glass Yahoo milk bottle from his first purchase, a walk to the neighborhood market with his friends… a huge triumph back in the day !.
Recently, I started rereading “Mountains of Spices” the sequel to “Hinds’ Feet on High Places” by Hannah Hurnard’s. Even though it has been over twenty years of reading these two books, I still can relate to her preface to this allegory. She writes about herself as follows, “I can speak with the most authority.I was born with a fearful nature– a real slave to the Fearing Clan ! But I have since made the glorious discovery that no one has such a perfect opportunity to practice and develop faith as do those who must learn constantly to turn fear into faith. One must either succumb to the fearing nature altogether and become a “Craven Coward” for the rest of one’s life; or by yielding that fearful nature wholly to the Lord and using each temptation to fear as an opportunity for practicing faith, be made at last into a radiant “Fearless Witness” to his love and power.”
For this writer I’m so not there yet, I will no less continue to “seek peace and pursue it “, falling down and getting back up again and again, spurred on by the ground I have already won with God’s help… turning my weaknesses into His strength.
Whether your taking quantum leaps of faith or faltering baby steps, God applause’s them both . He delights in each step or leap you take towards Him. Cheering you on not matter where your starting line begins and rejoices with you at your victorious finish.
Father, we praise you, in awe of your delight for us and the comfort you bring in our storm tossed seas . Providing perfect peace as our mind stays on you, trusting you over the mounding waves of fear. Learning to say Sayonara (Goodbye) to fear and Konnichiwa ( Hello ) to peace..
My friend Kelli ordered this mug for me and it arrived the day I was starting to worry about the Typhoon that had hit Japan.
3 You will guard him and keep him in perfect and constant peace whose mind [both its inclination and its character] is stayed on You, because he commits himself to You, leans on You, and hopes confidently in You .Isaiah 26:3 AMP bible
* II Timothy 1:7