This post follows on from my last post so you may need to read that one first if you haven't visited for a while (or ever).
Stuff I'm learning from " the tragedy" -
# If something has become a cliche its only because its true and needs to be heard a lot.
Isn't it odd that we find them so irritating?! "This too shall pass" "Its just a phase" "Look on the bright side" "Every dark cloud has a silver lining"
You know them . . .
# That the Serenity Prayer covers so many bases with so few words.
Talk about crystallizing simplicity!
# To beware of making assumptions.
Its been a shock to see how often people do that on the flimsiest of evidence - or no evidence at all.
And then to realise how often I have done it too.
# Seeing in a fresh way that we all have been given free will - people are given choices.
It must be one of the hardest things in the world to watch our adult children making poor choices and not be able to stop them.
Its the most natural thing to want to MAKE them do what we believe is better, but all we can do is to influence them for good.
Trying to play God in anyone else's life is a recipe for disaster.
Very often we see ourselves as " helping"
If you've ever been on the receiving end of that kind of " help", you know how infuriating it is!
Everyone hates the feeling of someone else trying to control them. " Oh Lord, help me to know when to shut up and when and how to speak!"
This twins with the above. But is important enough to have its own place.
In our effort to help, nuture, protect and provide, it is SO possible to overdo being a parent.
And to foster an entitlement attitude thats really hard to shake later
And which can smother initiative, self discipline, drive.
And the tragedy is that we can do it in ignorance and love -
# We need to feel our feelings but then, as we can, to move on through them.
I think its disastrous emotionally to just push our feelings under and pretend we're fine; we don't care.
Or to tell ourselves we have to be strong; to put on a happy face when we're dying inside; or, to feel we're being bad or weak Christians if we are battling.
Blathering all our feelings out to all and sundry is not a good idea either but finding one or two people we can trust, and letting them walk us through, listen to our pain, pray for us - these really help.
And the time will come when we know a shift has taken place and strength returns again.
# Get past the fears - a lot of what we suffer is because we imagine the future in the worst way.
When our thoughts run amuck, its is NEVER with happy positive thoughts.
Have you noticed?
Pull them back.
Replace them with reality.
Think - "Whats true now?" - not imagining worst case scenarios.
Thats where I've got to so far.
But I cannot end this post without a massive 'Thank You' to the Lord, who is faithfully seeing us all through this.
Update: We are all starting to get past the shock; there is a measure of 'normality' - if I can use that word in such an abnormal situation - returning.
It seems that the situation is irreversable (barring a miracle) but we have to recognise the choices and accept what we cannot change.
And trust God to bring fulfillment in the lives of these two young people.