Sunday, October 11, 2009

Lord, Change Me.

I bought a book once, never read it but had good intentions. It was called the A Woman’s Journey towards God or something along those lines. I have gobs of books that I bought with good intentions and never even cracked them open. I also have gobs of books I bought with good intentions, started them, and never finished them. And more still that I’ve cracked open and gotten several days into more than once and haven’t yet finished them. Today marks a new journey for me. One I’ve begun before but always seem to leave behind after a few days or weeks effort.

Today I found myself feeling completely overwhelmed and like I’ve lost all control. The point is that I’m not really in control any way, right? Isn’t it my job to do the praying and let God do the doing? The vast portion of my stress at the moment comes from a total loss I have in how to get through to my teenage son Tyler. I really feel like we’ve done everything right. Yet still his choices are disappointing. My husband bought this book for me, of course, The Power of a Praying Parent. I first discovered its companion, The Power of a Praying Wife and my husband owns The Power of a Praying Husband. I actually said out loud last night, “I need to find a book.” I thought I needed to find a book to teach me how to deal with my son; how to get through to him. Well low and behold, I HAVE the book! Prayer, I realize now, shouldn’t have been my last resort but my first step. The order of our lives should be God first, marriage second, and children third. It’s no secret I consider myself a selfish person and one who is tough to live with so my priorities are often out of line. I’ve known for years that I’m not as nurturing as I’d like to be, or as affectionate, patient, loving, or kind even. Anger and frustration seem to always be my first line of defense. The hubs and I are on day 8 of The Love Dare from the movie Fire Proof and I believe my husband is praying for me daily. Even if I don’t pray for him daily, a deeper love for him grows in me more each day because of his prayers for me. So this morning before I cracked my new parenting book, I cracked open my bible. In the process I also jotted down some scriptures I have highlighted so that my son can look them up and we’re going to talk about those together. Something I should have been doing with him since before he could read but the bible promises restoration (Joel 2:25) so I don’t think it’s too late to start. I then started, yet again, from the beginning with The Power of a Praying Wife and How to Make Your Husband Feel Loved.

I’ve had these doubts about my personality, these defaults I carry with me each day that have a profound effect on my husband and children daily, and not in a positive way. I know all too well though that in order to get to the joy, you first have to go through the pain. In this case, it’s the pain of change. Personal change. My prayers today and each day following must start with Lord please forgive me and Lord change me. Certainly both of those are going to hurt. The notion to correct these defaults does not come from shame or guilt but from a gentle conviction that only the Lord can deliver. Only the Lord has a way of pointing out your faults so blatantly and honestly without reproach yet leaves you with a feeling of determination, commitment, and peace without shame or guilt. So today marks the beginning of a journey I’ve begun before and will continue to begin over and over again until that change finally comes. Not change in my husband’s attitude or behavior or in my son’s attitude or behavior but change in me.