Last night we had an annual business celebration. From July through June, every year, our agents work hard to achieve levels of sales success, and in mid-July we have a party for those who made it. It’s always a good time.
One of our agents recently adopted a little girl, who, even at her relatively young age, had already experienced some pretty harrowing things. The transition has been a sweet, but not always easy, one, and last night was only one of a handful of times they’d left her with a sitter (the agent’s sister, at that). I knew they were both a little nervous, but they had fun and seemed to really enjoy the evening.
Then, just as I sat down to write this, my Facebook pops open in my browser, and I read about how, when they arrived back home, her sister told her about bedtime prayers. She said that the little girl went through her normal list of “God bless…” and “Please help…” and, just when her aunt thought she was finished, she said this:
Jesus, please, please bring my mommy and daddy back…
Bless her heart.
No really, BLESS IT.
Outside of something beyond their power, her parents will ALWAYS come back. I know this, because I know them. But I also know people (quite a few, in fact) whose parents didn’t come back. Instead, they walked out on their families, and I know people whose spouses did the same thing. Abandonment, in all its various forms, cripples people. And, even after they heal outwardly from it, it’s entirely possible their heart will always ache and yearn for inner healing for years after. If they’re honest they’ll see its fingerprints all over their lives, in their decisions, their actions and reactions, their relationships, their ability to experience peace.
Abandonment (by choice) is rampant in our society because commitment beyond ourselves is not.
People leave relationships and circumstances, typically because of their own brokenness, when it all boils down, and when a person is broken, the immediate response is to turn inward and focus on fixing and protecting their heart. They walk forward from that point, always looking within, and have a hard time committing fully to whomever is without, even if they want to. Then, brokenness passes down brokenness, and self-focus, like a twisted family heirloom unless someone decides that they will be the ones to stop it. It can sweep across generations like a silent plague.
Thankfully, no matter if you have a history of abandonment – no matter if you are dealing with the fall out every single day – there is Someone you can count on to never leave. I know this is true because He said so, and He NEVER LIES. EVER. I also know this to be true because He has never left me. Even in my darkest times, and even when I’ve been the one to walk away, He’s always been RIGHT THERE. He has committed to love us to the very end of all time, and even though He certainly has every right to be self-focused, He’s totally beyond Himself 24-7. After giving up His Son for us, abandonment is, well, not an option.
That sweet little girl will soon come to learn that she’s been placed in good hands. And she’ll eventually learn that the God those folks are teaching her about has the BEST HANDS. After all, He was with her when they were not (even for a very good reason). He won’t ever go anywhere.
“Be strong. Take courage. Don’t be intimidated. Don’t give them a second thought because God, your God, is striding ahead of you. He’s right there with you. He won’t let you down; he won’t leave you.” Deuteronomy 31:6 MSG
“When people make promises, they guarantee them by appeal to some authority above them so that if there is any question that they’ll make good on the promise, the authority will back them up. When God wanted to guarantee his promises, he gave his word, a rock-solid guarantee—God can’t break his word. And because his word cannot change, the promise is likewise unchangeable.” Hebrews 6:18 MSG
“The LORD himself watches over you! The LORD stands beside you as your protective shade.” Psalm 121:5 NLT
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16 ESV
precious … i love this!
This is such a good post that will reach out to so many people!!!
Love this! So much truth. We watch Emma still struggle with this at certain times. 🙁 I left on Monday for a work trip, only gone 2 nights and my sweet girl came in to my room Sunday night while I was packing with a quivering lip, tears in her eyes asking when I’d be back. Broke my heart. Reassured her that I will always come back but none the less she still has some fear deep down that she will be left again. Praying God will heal all of those who have suffered abandonment.