June 29, 2006

 

Encouragement for Today

Principle 1

 

“The Possessive Parent”

Micca Monda Campbell, Director of Outreach, Speaker Team Member

 

Key Verse:
Jeremiah 31:2-3, “This is the way God put it: "They found grace out in the desert, these people who survived the killing. Israel, out looking for a place to rest, met God out looking for them!" God told them, "I've never quit loving you and never will. Expect love, love, and more love!” (The Message)

 

 

Devotion:

Mom, I just wrecked my car. I’m okay, but Jessica is hurt. We’re just down the road from our house. Can you come?”

 

Can I come? What kind of question is that? I was already sitting in my car after he said the word “wrecked.” I just needed to know what direction to go in.

 

It’s one thing to hear that your child has been in a car accident, but it’s another to witness the scene. The first thing I saw when I arrived was his car sitting upside down and smashed between two trees like a pancake. An ambulance and fire truck were on the scene. Cars lined the road on each side and people were drawn out of their homes to see the wreckage. Once my mind was able to take it all in, I realized that Mitch and his friend were no where in sight.

 

“WHERE ARE THEY?” I began to shout as I turned in a circle scoping the area for any sign of them. A paramedic took me by the arm and we ran toward the ambulance. I felt my body go numb from fear of what I might fine inside.

 

The first person I saw was Mitch. Our eyes met, and without exchanging words, I could tell he was in shock but okay. Jessica, on the other hand, was strapped to a straight board with her back, neck and head secured. Tears filled my eyes as my concern for her grew.

 

“I’m fine mom, but Jessica isn’t.” Mitch said as if I could fix it. At that moment, if I couldn’t fix it, I sure was going to find someone who could.

 

I bent down close to Jessica and took her hand in mine. “I’m here, sweetie. It’s going to be okay.” I said trying to reassure us both. However, my motherly possessiveness took over when Jessica shared her needs with me and I tried to relay them to the paramedic as calmly as I could.

 

“I can’t breathe,” she whispered. “SHE CAN’T BREATH!” I insisted!

 

“I’m in pain,” she begged. “SHE’S IN PAIN!” I demanded! Suddenly, I felt as if I needed to lie down on the other side of the ambulance.

 

As we rode to the hospital, the paramedic told me that they had been leaving from another call when they happened upon my son’s wreck just as it happened. “How lucky is that?” he stated. “That’s not luck, mister. That’s God answering my prayers and protecting my family.” I said while lifting my oxygen mask so I could be heard.

 

As much as I hated the situation, it felt good to be needed by my twenty year-old son that day. He is very independent. Like most people, he likes to be in charge and in control of his life. The last thing he needs at his age is his parents, you know? In spite of that, life seems to have its way of teaching him that doing it his way, and alone, is not always best or enough. At times, we need others to help us, to encourage us, and to see us though. I’m thankful that my son acknowledged that he needed help. I’m grateful that he also knew he could call on me and I would come running with love and care.  

 

To some, God can appear to be like an over protective, rule-oriented parent. So we tend to rebel. However, God’s laws are not to prevent us from having fun. He is not a kill-joy. God’s standards are based on love, and devised only for our protection. Sadly enough, it’s our nature to live independent of God and His ways when we haven’t learned to trust and accept His love.

 

When things are going smooth, we are confident in ourselves. We don’t need anybody, not even God. That’s until we travel down the wrong road and wreck our lives. In this situation we often find ourselves alone, scared and helpless. Through these emotions we realize our need for help, and yet, we wonder, “If I call out to my heavenly Father, will He rescue me?” I want to assure you today that He will.

 

Just as an earthly parent is possessive over their children, likewise, God the Father is possessive over us, His children. In fact, while you’re wandering in the desert looking for rest, God is out looking for you. He wants to care for you, bring you home, and give you the rest that you need. Your heavenly Father is a possessive Parent not because He wants to control you but because He loves you.

 

At the hospital, surrounded by family and friends, Mitch could no longer hold in his emotions. Burying his head in my chest, he burst into tears. I wrapped my arms around him and reassured him that he was safe. Sometimes it’s our reckless behavior that drives us into the safety of God’s arms. It’s under His loving care that we realize there’s no better place on earth to be.

 

My Prayer for Today:

Lord, thank you that you are a possessive parent who not only cares for me, but comes when I call your name time and time again. Your grace is more than I deserve. You overwhelm me with your love and mercy. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

 

Applications Steps:

In order to avoid a life that leads to reckless behavior, we must realize that God’s ways are good. He is for us not against us and always has our best interest at heart. If you have been living life apart from God’s laws, tell Him you’re sorry and acknowledge Him as the only Lord and Master of your life.

 

Reflections Points:

What is at the center of your life — God or self? Your heavenly Father wants to be the object of your desire because you are His desire.

 

In what ways have you been wrecking your life?

 

Have you determined that your efforts alone are not enough?

 

Are you willing to let God set you back on the right road?

 

What do you need to do to give God the wheel of your life?

 

Power Verses:         

Palms 116:2, “Because He has inclined His ear to me, Therefore I will call upon Him as long as I live. (NKJ)

 

Revelation 3:19, “The people I love, I call to account - prod and correct and guide so that they'll live at their best. Up on your feet, then! About face! Run after God!” (The Message)

 

2 Thessalonians 2:16, “May our Lord Jesus Christ and God our Father, who loved us and in his special favor gave us everlasting comfort and good hope.” (NLT)

 

Additional Resources:    

The Bathtub is Overflowing, but I am Feeling Drained; by Lysa TerKeurst

New release for July at www.proverbs31.org

 

Being a Great Mom: Raising Great Kids, by Sharon Jaynes

http://proverbs31.gospelcom.net/newresources_greatMom.htm

 

“Getting Caught,” ETC Corner July 2005

http://proverbs31.gospelcom.net/etcJul05.htm