This past week has been an amazing week. My son Ryan has been going through a rough time since going to a new church. He was told his best friend is never allowed to see him again since his parents changed churches. It really, really hurt Ryan. He had been pretty moody lately. Not just these last couple of months but really for awhile. I hadn't really seen the evidence of him having a relationship with Christ. I have been praying for him that he will. But since losing his closest friend, I could tell he was hurting even more. He became even moodier and in turn was taking it out on everyone around him. Well, our church youth invited my boys to a youth convention. I guess our youth leader knows the singer that sings on the radio. Well, when they had the concert, the guy pulled the alter call and my son said his heart hurt. He prayed the sinners prayer. He said, "Mom, I just felt reborn!" The changed I've seen in him is drastic. The depression has lifted, the moodiness is gone, and he has had joy I haven't seen in a long, long time. I'm amazed!
Today at church my family went up for prayer. My son Chaz who is 13 got a word. That God hears his prayers every day. That he delights in him and has favor on him. That God not only loves him but likes him just as he is. I tried so hard not to cry hearing that. Chaz DOES talk to God every day. Without asking he will pray, do his homeschool, chores, and without complaint. I mean, he amazes me. Okay, one down, six more to go! Ha!
I had been battling depression for quite some time and really tried not to show it on my blog. I worked so hard to put God and my family first. In the process of that I was not always able to throw myself into ministries. I always knew my family was my first ministry. I just felt like I was on full blown burnout because I felt pressured to do more, more, more. I couldn't! I knew I was at my limit. A homeschooling mama is no joke. It's hard work. I've gone to college and worked before. Looking back, those jobs I had were a vacation compared to what I do now. However, no matter how hard I worked at home training my kids up in Christ and academically, I felt like I wasn't doing enough for God. I felt like I could never pray enough, read my bible enough, go to enough services. I felt guilty if I was on burnout and had to skip a service. Almost like I was displeasing God and that it meant I wasn't "faithful". That's further from the truth. God sees our heart. God saw those times that I would gather up my little ones in the morning and read the bible and pray with them. He saw the tears of prayer. He saw the witness in secret to someone who didn't know Christ. He sees those things that no one else does. I've learned that just because others might perceive me a certain way, they aren't God. They aren't the judge. He is. I live to please Him and Him alone. Yes, it's good to have accountability but that can be abused when it's used to spy or make someone feel guilty.
I've always seen God as someone who is watching me and just waiting for me to slip up. Waiting to knock me into hell if I mess up too much. There is a scripture that jumped out at me while I was sitting in church.
"Not a single person on earth is always good and never sins." Ecclesiastes 7:20
You probably think what's the big deal. Ohhhh, that's a big deal for me. I always put down myself for not being perfect enough. I hated that I made mistakes. Or that I gossiped when I shouldn't have. Or that I thought a bad word. I just hated that I couldn't be good enough.
"His anger lasts only a moment, but His favor lasts a lifetime!..." Psalms 30:5
What? That was news to me too! Well, I guess that makes sense. A GOOD father would forgive his son if he came to him and admitted a mistake. A dad isn't gonna berate him for weeks on end and turn his back on him because of it. (A normal, sane, God seeking dad of course). He will be happy his child repented! It's not the other way around where He can't wait for you to make a mistake so He can flick you into hell. Because of this thinking I just really had a bad view of God. I feared him, which I should, but it was a very, very unhealthy fear. A kind that kept me extremely depressed at times. Since being delivered of that earning my way to heaven mentality, I feel such a freedom I have never felt before. In that freedom comes joy. Not a single day of that depression has come back in two months. THAT IS A MIRACLE. My husband has seen the difference. Praise God!
Thank you, Jesus, for not giving up on my even though I was beginning to. Even though I was beginning to turn my back because I didn't believe you could love someone like me. Forgive me for being incredibly judgmental of others when I had no right to. You have forgiven so much of me and continue to do so. Forgive me for my ungrateful heart in everything you have revealed to me in the past. Not believing you when you revealed how much you loved. I feel like I was going around the desert grumbling and never believing in Your promise. I love you!