This is the very last lesson and it's gone so fast! We started out all together watching a video of a speaker talking about how hard it was to let go of her daughter and entrust her to God. The harder she tried to control the situation the more she was forced to let go. And the more she let go the more she learned to enjoy life. Deb S. also shared her letting go of her daughter Sam and how we can really believe we are doing what we think is in the best interest of our child when in fact we are not allowing them to try things on their own. This was such a intense time for Deb that the emotions are still there when retelling the story.
Deb was successful in letting go but it took time. I will tell you Deb's daughter is an incredible girl, and she has made choices that any parent would be proud of. Sam is gracious and loving to everyone she comes in contact with (that rates high on my list). She loves God with her whole heart, strives to do her best in school and is a hard worker at her job. Yes, you can let go and the world will not fall apart, you can see Sam rose up to the task beautifully. Of coarse she has a good role model to follow in Deb.
My own daughter is a senior in high school this year so I know the feeling too. But I also have a son who is 24 and is on his own for the first time this year in his new house. After living in a large living area in our basement for years while he finished college I was still wondering as he was moving will he live without dusting for a year like he does here? Will he have piles of clothes everywhere? Will he remember to pay his bills? Well he also stepped up to it in a way that surprised me. He actually can pick out things for his house that match and look good. Because it is his house he has taken ownership and pride in his investment. And he has done well with staying in his budget.
I think we take a freeze frame and advance it to the future and think how are they ever going to be capable to making it on their own. We should all be glad we weren't judge on how we were as teenagers to how we would be as adults or we would indeed all be in trouble! There are times our children are going to make choices we don't agree with but from my experience God has every single time through prayer stepped in, when we as parent's could do nothing but pray.
Deb's group talked a lot about the influence of a mother. The other part of the chapter talked about female friendships which our group talked more about that aspect. Stasi talked about her relationship with her mother and how she felt she had been a disappointment to her mother as a daughter. Stasi admits she did make a lot of mistakes growing up. Stasi and her mom would disagree about everything and so for 15 years they just talked about the weather. Finally God revealed to Stasi that she made her mother feel the same way she felt....like she was a disappointment. An embarrassment. A failure. And she said with clarity she felt her mother's sorrow. She realized in that moment her mother wanted to like her, know her and enjoy her just as much as she wanted her mom to do for her. She had withheld her acceptance from her. And she realized for the first time how deeply she had wounded her.
Stasi felt compelled to make it right with her mom and she did. One month later her mother found out she was dying and four months later she did indeed die. How gracious was God in putting that on Stasi heart so she would have that healing time with her mother.
We may not physically give birth but we are all called to mother. And all women are called to give birth. Women give birth to all kinds of things--to books, our churches, creative expressions, to ideas, etc.
When we enter into the our world and into the lives of those we love and offer our tender and strong feminine hearts, we cannot help but mother them.
MY SISTER,MY FRIEND
We all have many people who mother us rather they are neighbors, teachers, sisters, or friends. Women must have women friends because we have a vast need for relationships that a husband and children can not met. Women friends become the face of God to one another the face of grace, of delight, of mercy.
Now I do know a lot of women have expressed that they have a history of not trusting women, just stick with me if you are one of those women. God's word has much to say about the issue which may just clarify things for you.
If you are like me you may not have seen your mother having healthy friendships or you may have thought it was your duty to bring everyone into your inner circle to try to win them over with Christ's love. And there may be times when God with wants you to minister to certain people but it is still not letting them in your inner circle. You may only have one in the inner circle and that's ok. If you truly have none I do believe God can give one through prayer so don't give up. When you are in a toxic friendship you are going to be drawn in to a battle with anger and that's not where God wants for you.
Web MD has a list of signs of Toxic Friendships
People who are negative, criticize, belittles, or puts you down.
Make you feel unhappy, unhealthy and unequal.
Expect you to pick them up.
Drain the life right out of you.
Lies to you, makes promises they don't keep.
Wants all your time.
Is jealous of you.
Has a lot of drama in their life.
You want friends who have the fruits of the Spirit, love, joy peace, patience, kindness, goodness, and self control. Also a healthy friendship has a balance of give and take. We must nurture a friendship.
Just to remember to give grace because we are not perfect this side of heaven and we can be good friends to each other but never the perfect friend.
Thank you for taking the journey with us through this great book. We will be announcing a new topic in Feb. 2011.