Thanks Mom and Dad

I am writing this from my old bedroom in the home that I grew up in in Ohio.  It’s always nice to be home.  The older I get the sweeter home sounds.  When I am home alone in my old bedroom I think back to the days when I was young and wonder where on earth all that time has gone.  I also think of all the heart felt moments these walls have witnessed – the tears this floor has absorbed.  My dad is going to paint the walls in here in the next few weeks.  Today when we were chatting about that I reminisced about all the layers of paint color that is already on the walls around me.  I often wonder how my life had be different had various things been slightly different.  I wonder what kind of person I would be had I shared this room with a sister.  I wonder what life would have been like had my heart been broken fewer times than it was.  I also wonder how on earth I ever fit all of my clothes ever fit in that little closet.  But that’s neither here nor there.  Our lives are orchestrated one moment at a time by a loving God.  Each physical and emotional pain that we experience was all part of God’s plan.  Each joyful moment a gift from the Father.  Now I lay here waiting for slumber to come my way and listen to my husband gently snoring beside me.  I realize how blessed I am to serve a God whose love far exceeds that of any other person on this earth. 

I think of how many heart to heart conversations took place between me and each of my parents in the living room down the hall.  Now my own children rest there for the night.  How blessed I am to have parents who, after all these years, are still married and walking their life with one another following the Lord.  I was reminded this week of how rare it is these days for children to be a part of a two parent family – two natural parents and not step parents.  The kids have each made friends this school year with some wonderful children their age.  Some of them are in single parent homes.  But a small handful have parents who are actually their birth parents.  That pricked my heart to realize how important love is.  Love is an entity that has to be cultivated through the years.  That doesn’t mean that loving someone is always easy.  Sometimes it is very difficult.  But love is also a choice.  I’m sure there were times in my parents’ marriage that were so difficult that it would have seemed like a "good idea" to those around them that they no longer chose to love one another.  I"m grateful for the example that they have shown me while I was living within these walls that life isn’t always a bed of roses.  sometimes there are thorns along the way.  But God blesses the institution of marriage.  If we respect that then we know that we need to work on it constantly. 

Satan is always trying to destroy the family.  If he can win the battle and drive a wedge between a husband and a wife he can destroy not only one marriage but the marriages of those in generations to come.  For two believers who are committed to God and to each other success is possible.  We have to guard our relationship with everything we have.  Satan is an enemy who is real.  But with the power of God we can defeat him.  We can stand up to him united as a family unit.  Just as we choose to fight for our families we can also fight for our love.  We can send Satan reeling just by joining hands and commit ourselves to the battle. 

As I close my eyes tonight in my childhood bedroom I do so with the security of knowing that my parents have withstood the battles Satan has engaged them in over the years.  They not only withstood but they have been victorious thus far.  I will rest tonight and each night hereafter knowing that if they can do it then so can I.  Hopefully one day Michael and Lauren will be saying the same thing about Ron and I.  Can your children say the same thing?  I hope that they can!  We can choose to keep loving in good times AND in the bad times.  And we can win victory over our enemy!

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