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Not the Answers I Expected

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Leslie with our critters. Mittens on the back of the couch and our dogs Shasta, Riley and River.

My friends, I want to give you an update on some things that have happened in my family, specifically my daughter as many of you have prayed with me for her over the years. For our newer readers I will give a brief summary of the journey we've been on with her since 2007, because I want you to see the full scope of how God moves in the most subtle and unexpected ways.

We've walked through much with my youngest daughter who will soon be 21. At 13 she was diagnosed with severe depression, then later in 2008 at age 14 we found out she had a malignant brain tumor (the clinical name for it is the length of a run on sentence!). God was very present during all this, making it clear she would be okay. The miracles He did during that time still stun me. I think even more so now that I know Him better than I did then and understand more fully the things He did.

As difficult as that all sounds, the hardest part came afterwards with the emotional fall out of all she endured, more depression, then critical decisions about her future. I confess I was so desperate for "normal" for my girl that it was very at times to recognize God's hand moving in her life, because it wasn't what I expected. Yet it always was what she needed.

And He's moved that way again. These last four years especially have been about her catching up. But God had given me promises for her—one from Micah 2:4 that she would be like a calf leaping from it's stall (Have you seen cows run in delight? Google it. It's quite astounding.)

So I prayed that diligently and have remind God of it often of His promise. And waited. And waited. And waited... (I think you get my point here.)

"Things" began to unfold several weeks ago. After two years of prayers for a job for this girl who has learned to understand her limitations in handling stressful situations and crowds she "got a job." It wasn't what I expected but it was exactly her speed, so to speak, working for a family we know, love and trust as caregiver for their little girl. Leslie adores kids, always wanted a little sister, and aspires greatly to be a mom one day.

As this unfolded, her car was totaled while parked in front of our house. Thankfully she wasn't hurt and the other driver was fine. I held little hope that we'd get much for this old car but prayed for enough at least to get her back into a decent car. God blew us away with twice what I'd expected. Leslie is now driving her favorite car—a 2002 Ford Mustang.

What I haven't shared is my family and I are moving back to Florida (from CA) in late November. The plan was for Leslie to come with us, but earlier this year she met a wonderful young man (who'd a believer) and now wants to stay in California.

I confess again that for the last two weeks as this solidified, I fell into a bit of a depression. My heart was breaking as I faced this challenge of letting go of my youngest (again as she moved to Florida to stay with family for a while a few years ago) without seeing (don't miss that I used that word) definite signs and proof that it will be okay.

God reminded me that He would be the one taking care of all her needs. And I am now more fully embracing that for my daughter, even though "things" don't look as I expected them to look. Even though the answers to all these years of prayers are unfolding not as I pictured, imagined, and expected but exactly as God knew Leslie would need them.

The final answer to so many prayers for her future comes today (it's Friday as I'm writing this). Today I am faxing in her college registration. She will be a student again (a very brave step for this girl) and pursue her certification in pet grooming. Leslie is gifted with an amazing ability to work with animals and this is part of her dream to one day have her own shop.

So I'm letting go. And trusting God to continue to bring my precious girl out from the constrains of her past to leap with joy into her future. It's not clean and tidy as there are still loose ends that will take time to complete (it’s that wait thing again). And it's not as I imagined it (did I say that already?)

But it is as it should be. As God planned it. For her.

My dear friends, I want to thank you for all your prayers. They’ve been heard and now we’re seeing the answers. The journey continues for my daughter and I both as she steps into a new life and independence, and I trust God to take care of the loose ends and this mamma’s heart that is learning to let go.

Love you all so much,
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