Modeling God's Redemption to Your Kids
- Elisabeth Klein Crosswalk.com Contributing Writer
- 2013 5 Sep
My divorce is my biggest life regret for one reason: I replicated my childhood in my children’s lives, despite how desperately I didn’t want to do so and how deeply and repeatedly I promised myself I wouldn’t.
My children have lived through a very difficult marriage. Then they lived through a very difficult separation and divorce. And now they are living in relative peace with a few crazy blips every once in a while. And this makes me so sad, because they have learned, by looking at their mom and dad, that life is better and quieter and more peaceful and healthier when marriage is not in the picture. At this point in time I have no idea how to teach them that marriage is indeed a beautiful thing, other than to tell them and point them to other couples who are doing marriage well.
But what I do hope that I have taught them is that even though divorce is horrible, God is still there. And is full of grace. And picks up the pieces. And that he didn’t just walk away from me, but, in actuality, seems to have moved even closer. That he revels in using the hard things in our lives to bring deeper beauty out of us, but also to help us reach out to others in their pain.
I hope and pray that’s what my children have seen in me the past couple of years…that though I cried a lot, and didn’t always know what my next step should be, and messed up more than I want to admit…I have reached for the hand of God and for the hands of other people who love me, and I have let him begin to put me back together so that I could help others see that their lives aren’t over.
Your life could be a mess right now. And your kids might be sensing it if they’re young, or totally experiencing it right alongside you if they’re a bit older. And though, yes, it’s our job to protect to our kids, you know what? I think it’s just as much of our job to show our kids how to walk through the messes. The messes we usher into our own lives and the messes that just sweep their way through.
Either way, every time, we have an opportunity to show our kids what it looks like to go to God when we’re hurting; we have the opportunity to show our kids what it means to be vulnerable and ask our friends for help; and we have the opportunity to show our kids how it will look for God to bring back to life our dreams, or even our very selves.
Life is messy. God is bigger. And we get to tell our kids about that, over and over again.
(c) Elisabeth K. Corcoran, 2013
Elisabeth is mom to Sara (16-1/2) and Jack (15). She loves spending time with her kids, her friends, reading and writing. She is the author of At the Corner of Broken & Love; One Girl, Third World; He Is Just That Into You; In Search of Calm: Renewal for a Mother’s Heart; and Calm in My Chaos: Encouragement for a Mom’s Weary Soul. All these books can be purchased on Amazon.com. Her upcoming book, Unraveling, is releasing with Abingdon Press in October 2013.
If you are in a difficult marriage or find yourself going through a difficult divorce, I have created two private groups on Facebook that I would like to invite you to. Simply email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Elisabeth is a proud Member of Redbud Writer's Guild.
Publication date: September 5, 2013