Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Simply Following Him

When I was two years old my parents divorced, I didn't see my father again for 28 years. Due to different circumstances my older brothers and I never saw my father or knew anything about his life. We lived with our mother (who is the sweetest woman in the world), and were loved by our extended family, my mother had 8 siblings who all went on to have large families of their own, needless to say we were never at a loss for familial love! (one of moms sisters died before having children, she was married and died as a result of a fire at their home).
Anyway, the boys and I never did without anything and our growing up years were as normal as any other family throughout the sixties and seventies, our mother was an excellent homekeeper and worked very hard so we could live in our home with yard and woods as far as the eye could see. We didn't have a lot of extras but then again I don't think most folks did back then, everybody was just getting by and working to support their families.
When I was 9 my mother married my step father and when I was 12 my baby sister Rhonda was born, such joy our family had never known!!! Rhonda brought such fun and joy to us and as we all struggled through those teen years we had some ups and downs but made it through pretty well unscathed.

Fast forward to 1990, when I was 30.........
My stepfather and mother divorced, it was amicable and was simply the thing that needed to happen. My older brother decided at this time that he would find our father and I guess see if he could somehow go about starting the process that would heal a lot of deep wounds. Well, he found my father and reintroduced him to my mother, when I was 30 I was their maid of honor in their wedding and they have been married now for 19 years.

Growing up I would have never, ever thought this would happen, our lives were just completely separated from my father and I would never have sought out my father, I was a very stubborn (claiming to be Christian.....oh yes, I certainly was) young lady and didn't 'need' my father in my life. Oh such anger and I believe I allowed to continue compounding until I was so very 'self righteous' I suddenly stopped talking to my mother. If she was going to do this then I would have nothing to do with her, I was also pregnant at the time but will not say this was prego hormones, no this was downright stubbornness. That's right, this sweet little woman who would have then and would now lay down her life for me, I decided that I would not forgive her for forgiving my father for leaving us. Do you see the twist here? She, the woman that had been scorned and left to raise three children alone!!!, was able to forgive because forgiveness was what she had to do....why?....because Christ forgave and if Christ could forgive, who was she to hold onto anger and be unforgiving.....and yet I purposely would not speak to her and was very cruel to her, all because she did what the scriptures say we must do. Yes, that sweet little woman was able to take all of those years of hurt and just lay them at the foot of the cross....and get this!!!!-she didn't take them back....as so many of us do. She forgave and that was that. Such an incredible example of a godly woman I had!!!

A few months later I got over my little childish tantrum and realized that if she was happy I should be happy, she had done everything for me so now it was time for me to give that back. I've watched my father be an incredibly loving husband to my little mama and grandfather to my children, but most importantly that sweet man stood in front of me and allowed me to say horrible things to him, never once saying anything back but 'I'm sorry', I guess you probably realize now that my father was also now a Christian and the rest is history, yes, we've had some sadness in our lives as we've dealt with losing loved ones but our family unit is stronger than ever and the whole reason why is because we all are....simply following Him.

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