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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

An Unexpected Gift

Earlier this week, my best friend posted a hilarious, heart warming story on her blog about her oldest daughter (www.fromgodstummy.blogspot.com) called "The List". In this true story, she recounts a situation in which her daughter composed a list of conversation starters in preparation for a "date" with her mom and dad. The list included subjects such as "The Economy" and "Dad's Work" - things your average child ponders daily (ha ha).
The post I'm preparing to write sounds eerily similar to my friend's post but I promise you (with my pinky in the air - since typing while raising my right hand is impossible) that I, too, stumbled on a list just yesterday. I was putting a pair of Lemuel's socks in his drawer when a piece of lined notebook paper caught my eye. I pulled it out and sat on the edge of his bed to read. I will type it below just as he wrote it, misspellings and all, and there is no need to elaborate on it.
He said it all.

BIG GOAL (underlined 6 times)
Things I Must Know!
1. Think before you speek
2. Tell the truth
3. Think of others
4. Do not make up things
5. Say things that are right
6. Be careful what you say
7. Obey your perant
8.ITS Not About Me All The Time!
9. Obey all the rules around the house
10. Wait and think about the things I did and tell them the truth
John 14:21 (Obey) Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me.
Psalm 39:1 and 2
I said I will watch my ways and keep my tongue from sin: as long as the wicked are in my presence. But when I was silent and still, not even saying anything good, my anguish increased.
Proverbs 10:18
He who conceals his hatred has lying lips and whoever spreads slander is a fool.

He knows how to use his Bible's concordance. That's where the scripture came from.
Upon reading this list, at least some of my ire faded. I still have my guard up. We have been on this roller coaster for years and I believe there are more drops ahead. But there's a slice of hope. A tiny ray of light snaggled in when I read this note. There IS, in fact, a sprout of conscience there. He DOES care about doing right. I feel "safer" when he's on my "naughty list", just like he does. Feeling warm and loving toward him is risky. Your hand gets slapped back inevitably but he's just a CHILD. There's still hope . . .


  1. Oh WOW! What a gift that was at a time God knew you needed it. Prayers again for today.

  2. Perfect timing. Keep pressing on my friend.

  3. My husband and I had custody of my 15 yr. old brother when we were in our middle twenties. I cannot tell you how unprepared and clueless we were about what we were facing! Our parents (speaking of myself and my brother) had divorced and Nathan (my brother) had bounced back and forth between mom and dad trying to find some semblance of normalcy and security again. After a lot of heartache and acting out, he came to live with us. We got custody with the approval of our parents, and Nathan stayed with us for 4 years. It wasn't always easy, but in the hardest times I had to remind myself that God has forgiven me for much worse than Nathan could ever come up with. Nathan's rejection, lying, sneaking around to do thing behind our backs, etc., was nothing worse than the many times I left my Bible lying on a table for days on end without communicating with my Heavenly Father. Not worse than the times I did things and convinced myself they were okay as long as my "spiritual" friends never found out. (Cue the movies or TV shows that I should not have been watching!) My "sneaking" around on my Heavenly Father was just as bad...
    I stumbled across this article yesterday and it conveys in words what I felt when Nathan lived with us. It blessed my heart tremendously. We have an adopted 22 month old, and working on getting licensed to adopt through the state for older children. I am sure our hard times are not over yet! Anyway, the article talks about why we adopt, and you immediately came to mind! I know you have the right heart for adoption, and so I hope this blesses your heart to know that because you are rescued, you are now a rescuer! No matter how many times Lem tests you, you are proving yourselves to be faithful rescuers. One thing Nathan told me after he moved in was this..."I kept doing things when I was living with Mom and Dad to see if they loved me enough to make me stop." You are proving to Lem every day that you love him enough. Many prayers for you and your family! Your blog is a blessing to so many that you probably don't even know read it! :)

    ~ Emily


  4. You've reached his heart and he really wants to do well. As I always say, you are my role model for parenting!