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Jan 5

Good morning, Father.
Thank you for making me humble, or at least more so than I was. I know I still have a lot of pride, especially when I get hurt and angry. Thank you for letting the impact be smaller than if I were to rage at someone while I was mad. Thank you for teaching me how I can write a nasty letter or email and tell someone exactly how I feel and justify my own actions all over the place… and then either delete it or just keep it for myself. Thank you for teaching me that I simply do NOT have to say a word. Because YOU are The Word, my own words are unimportant. Whenever I hold back my own words, it gives place to yours, allowing your LIVING Word to come in and teach, and help, and heal. Please help me to hide behind your Word like a shield, rather than trying to spear any offenders with my own ineffective words. Teach me how to vent to YOU, and leave my anger behind. Make me more pleasing and useful to you, Oh Lord!

Proverbs 15:18 & 20

A wrathful man stirreth up strife: but he that is slow to anger appeaseth strife.

A wise son maketh a glad father: but a foolish man despiseth his mother.

The first verse reminds me of myself — how my anger, if allowed to, can fan the flames of anger and strife with others. Lord, please help me to calm my temper with this truth, and be slower to get angry, AND to not feel like I must defend myself, which is what most often causes my anger.

The second verse reminds me of this day, and how it is my youngest son’s 20th birthday (as well as my wedding anniversary AND the birthday of my husband’s 21-year-old son, heehee). Lord, I do not know if my son is wise, because I have only “heard” from him a couple times since he started technical training in the air force, about 6 months ago. I’ve only gotten a few lines of email from him, and the last ones seemed bitter, saying I can’t miss him because I have my husband — his step-father. But you know how much I really DO miss him, Lord. :O<

I don’t know if he is yet wise, or even if I am, for that matter. But he DOES have traits which I admire, which I find honorable. Of course there is his vast intelligence and artistic ability. But he also has the ability to let things roll off him, whether they be physical discomforts or negative feedback from others. This last one is both a strength and a weakness. He is relatively unaffected by what others think about him — awesome, but this also limits his empathy and his ability to grow, socially. His brusque manner can tend to isolate him, even as his warmth and wittiness tends to draw people. He therefore seems to exist in a state of simultaneously repelling AND attracting people, therefore being a source of confusion and sometimes emotional/social discomfort to others. I’m his mother and I still do not know how he feels towards me. Most of the time I feel like he despises me (which would make him foolish according to the verse above), blaming me for “abandoning” him, leaving him with his father along with his sibs, while I relocated to Texas from Michigan.

But there is so much more to the story than that. He was supposed to only VISIT his father for 2 weeks, then he was supposed to move back in with me. Instead, his father immediately enrolled him and his sibs in school where he lived, in a rather remote area of Tennessee. I gave the kids their choice, and this son was adamant that he wanted to finish out the school year there. So I let him. After that I fought to convince everyone that he should stay with me and go to school here. Which he did. At the end of that first semester, I convinced them to let the last 2 kids come live with me and go to school here. And like the wind, their father disappeared for good soon after. We do not even know which state he lives in now, and I will not speak of the evils he has been accused of — by his own daughter, his sister-in-law, and others. The way I see it, we ALL have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory. We ALL need God. I just wish my son did not blame me for whatever happened to him during the time he was with his father. I even called the kids every single weekend, and sent them letters, cards, and packages on a regular basis. I hope that some day, he comes to realize just how hard I tried to show him I love him and care about him — from the long-forgotten snuggles and endless talks when he was growing up, to the recent emails and packages I’ve sent him, this year. And beyond. I will keep trying to reach out to him, even if it is rejected. I am MOM. Mama Fran. And I love him.

Lord, please hold my heart in regards to my own “prodigal son” (although estranged would be a better word here). Please heal our relationship and restore the friendship we had when he was a child, before he went to live with his father. Lord, you see all, you see how much my heart loves my son. I know you understand. Perhaps this can help me to understand just a tiny bit, what it meant to you to have to let YOUR son go. But He returned to you, Lord. Please let my son return to me someday. Please bless him in some special way today, on his 20th birthday. Let him check his email box and his physical mailbox, and find what I have left for him. Please work a miracle and let him actually FEEL the love that is in those gifts. Let him really know that he has a family who loves him, misses him, cares about him. And even more so, I pray, Lord, that you work an even greater miracle in this son, letting an agnostic become a believer, bringing him gently into a very personal, very intimate knowledge of YOU. He needs you, Lord. Way more than he ever needed me. Shower him with your grace. Care for him as you do for me. Thank you, Father! šŸ˜€


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