Nana Holds from Coffee Hour @ Chicklitpower

Coffee Hour @ Chicklit Power...

Coffee Hour @ Chicklit Power…

EL pen Logo with heart

Thank you so much for joining me on this last day of the week! I pray that you are not experiencing oppression or depression with all these truths that I am sharing with you, but that the revelations will cast light on your journey in all your significant relationships, especially those with children! Grab your coffee and come on in.

So our next category involves some powerful symptoms, some not so easy to recognize. Let’s get started. “Do you often feel ashamed not only about your behavior, but also about the behavior of others, i.e. your spouse, your child?”

Well I was free from this symptom at the time of the event and still now, but it took some serious circumstances and antibiotics from Him to rid me of this one. We need to understand that people are not His robots, but individuals with the power of choice and what others do is not necessarily a reflection on us, despite what we may think. I know, I can hear you saying what about my drug-addicted son, or my daughter that got pregnant before marriage? Why did they do that? I am in no way condoning their behavior; nor am I saying you as the parent had absolutely nothing to do with it, but when we come into an awareness of our faults and shortcomings, especially when it comes to parenting, and there were many of those in my parenting journey, we need to trust that if we are showing up to abide in Him, only HE can right the wrong and He will use their mistakes as part of their testimony. To feel shame for past behavior means you have not forgiven yourself which negates Christ’s dying on the cross for all sins, all shame, all guilt!

The next question sort of takes off from the previous one or my explanation at least: “Do you feel guilty about the problems of others in your family?” As I finished writing this question, I was reminded of a sweet friend going through the recovery process with her daughter who has been in rehab for a heroine addiction. The journey has been bittersweet as I’ve witnessed her wrestling with this very issue, coming to the realization that what is hers is hers and what is her daughter’s is her daughter’s. She is in that process of looking at her parenting journey, owning what she could have done differently, or better, and why, as well as what she did do well.

That question leads us to this one: “Do you withdraw from social contact when you’re feeling upset?” The reason I say it leads to that is many of us do isolate when we are upset, when our children/spouse do something that we think others view as shameful, and we tend to isolate. That’s the worst thing we can do because isolation leads to depression and when depression gets its hooks on us, it’s hard to wrangle free, let alone recognize these symptoms. At the time I took this symptom test, I was leaning more towards no but still did have a tendency to isolate when upset. Today, I am allowing vulnerability to peek out of my God-shaped hole in my heart and am finding that inviting others to my circumstances is, more often than not, met with a positive result.

“Do you sometimes hate yourself?” Hate is a strong word but if you don’t love yourself, then you don’t like yourself and so the answer is clear. In the early parts of my unpacking process, I despised myself as a parent and that interfered with my self-perception, how I am coming to learn that He sees me. Did you know that when you are His, He sees you without all your hurts, habits and hang-ups? He sees you with all of His potential in you! That’s a huge leap to make, and I am still mid-air in that flight. How about you?

The final question in this category of symptoms is “Do you ever cover up bad feelings about yourself by acting too confidently?” My answer then was no and it still is no today. However, I have come to realize that many of us do this very thing and when we understand it, it helps us to not take their apparent arrogance masked as confidence personally!

I can’t help but end our time with something I have learned regarding all the symptoms in this category, and it has everything to do with Bryden. I am still awestruck by his confidence, his child-like enthusiasm for life, his level of trust and faith that says things are right and good in his world. He has a confidence that reveals itself when he engages with others. It’s something that squeezes my heart with humility and joy because I know that George and I have been part of helping that along.

I remember in the beginning months, all of that used to bug me and I couldn’t quite figure out why. Just before this event He showed me why: My childhood and all the joyful things that are supposed to accompany childhood were taken from me; therefore I didn’t know how “to be” as a child. It was almost as if I were jealous about all the love and attention he was getting. Oh how thankful I am that God has used this little guy to bring out the child in me, enabling me to securely connect with him. The result: He’s restoring all that the locusts have stolen, despite my past, because He has my present and He has secured my future. Oh that our relationship with Him would be in a constant flux of revival!

Join me Monday for more and thanks again for allowing me to share what has become so relevant in my relationships with the hope that you will experience revival in all of yours.


Nana Holds!

Nana Holds!

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