I’m honored to have my dear friend, Donna Bostick guest post today! I love how she shares truth through laugher and life lessons.
This week we’re not only studying about “the right kind of fear” but “the love of our Father, God.” The goal of God’s love is transformation. What we learn in chapter 10 is that God’s love is greater than all our sin. Greater because of one word–forgiveness.
“We are product of our past but we don’t have to be prisoners of it.” – Rick Warren
Fear and panic gripped me as I strained on my tip toes to peek through the curtains. Round and round the car went. Spinning through one ditch then raging across the street. Circling its’ way through another ditch as it threw dust and rocks into the air. And another as it barely missed the row of mail boxes. And finally, coming to a complete and sudden stop in the front yard as smoke billowed from its’ engine.
What started as a simple late night chore the night before ended in the chaos of my Dad jumping in the front seat of my Mom’s car the next afternoon and literally driving it to its’ death. The errand the night before that ignited my Dad’s anger was a simple late night trip to the laundry mat.
On our return trip back home that night, my Dad’s car overheated and my Mom had no way of getting in touch with him. He was nowhere to be found. (Yep, this was all before the invention of the cell phone). So my Mom kept driving the car as it was late and she was alone with us – her three little girls, ranging in ages from 4 to 8.
So Dad did what any other dad would do – right?? He sought a little revenge by ‘doing donuts’ in the ditches alongside our country home until Mom’s car spun its’ last donut.
This is just one of many incidents that I would classify as one of my Dad’s “Unglued” moments. For him, it just so happened to be the one that pushed my Mom over the edge to pack us girls up and leave. A few days later, after Mom had sold all of our furniture, I remember her loading us up on the gigantic gray bus and we were off to visit my uncle. A few weeks later, we moved in with my Granny.
The next forty or so years have consisted of my Dad walking in and out of my life just as he drove the car in and out of the ditches that afternoon so many years ago. Broken promises. Broken hearts. Broken dreams. Broken girls. And yes, still a broken car.
Just this week, I received an email from my little sister telling me that my Dad had gotten kicked out of his nursing home for the third time for his temper tantrums and was being admitted to a mental hospital. I think I got more upset with the thought that I might be on the inheriting end of his mental illness than the fact that he may have hurt someone in his fit of anger.
I forwarded a request to a dear friend and asked her to pray about the situation. Her reply, “…have you forgiven your dad?…just wondering…wanted to make sure you were set free from that before things may get even worse with him.”
Not only was I flooded with the emotional memories of the car spinning uncontrollably in the ditches so many years ago, but God instantly flooded my heart with His words from the Parable of the Unforgiving Servant in Matthew 18: 21-22, “Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?” Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy times seven.
As chosen Daughters of the King, we are called to forgive those who have hurt us just as God has forgiven us – no matter the offense. “Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. (Colossians 3:12-14)
Won’t you join me in clothing yourselves with forgiveness – not only the forgiveness of the King, but the forgiveness of yourselves and forgiveness of others? Won’t you join me in living a life of freedom – freedom from your past – freedom from your hurts – freedom from your fears?
Lord, I thank You for Your gift of forgiveness. Please help me to forgive those who have hurt me –just as you have forgiven me – especially when the memories of the past come flooding in. Please help me to keep no record of wrongs. Thank you for freeing me from my past hurts. Thank you for freeing me from my past and not allowing my past to define me. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
If you were touched by Donna’s post like I was, stop by Donna’s blogand let her know!
One last thing. I’m losing my mind! I never posted last weeks video. I’m not only asking forgiveness, I’ll post the video here! http://youtu.be/BiBpfvKGjPE Topic: A Step of Faith: Overcoming the fear of the unknown
Peace and blessings!