Tuesday, May 8, 2012

God's Summer By Nina Keegan-Owens

As summer is fast approaching and the realization of having our kids back home driving us crazy with endless commotion sets in, I get anxious about wanting to keep everyone safe and happy this summer. I have started praying for God to swoop in like a super hero and fix it all... Line it all up nice and neat and not give us anything to panic about!!!... I think to myself, This is God's summer too! He wants to enjoy this time with us, he wants us to trust Him to be with our kids when they need Him most.
I Have always been one of those moms that continuously wants to"fix"everything for my kids. You know the deal, we want to make easy their paths, take away their hurts, ease their pains, and erase all their insecurities. We don't want them to make the same mistakes we made.

When our kids hurt, we hurt! Up until about 2 years ago, I feel like I had been a pretty darn good fixer mom, as compared to what I do not know, as I don't believe there are any statistics on that sort of thing yet! I may even have been deserving of a small award of sorts. A tiny trophy perhaps, the good fixer medal or at the very least a pat on the mom back! Yup, I took my mom fixing job to extreme heights, it was and still is a job I take very seriously. I could talk my kids off the ledge when they were upset or had had the "worst day ever!!!" I was there to help with all the problems, the endless homework and studying, I drove them to at the very least, an infinity X a million practices and lessons, I took them out driving through parking lots and on abandoned roads when they were eagerly learning to drive. I was the life guard each and every summer. We
have been through girl troubles and being grounded, when I was certain I was not winning any popularity contests any time soon. I was there to calm the nerves of first days of school or when they were starting a new job, and I sat vigil by the bedside when they were sick, becoming an instant nurse that would watch hours of cartoons armed with popsicles and tons of jello.
I'm sure you as a parent have quite the same long laundry list... We could go on and on until our list resembles the looooong white grocery store receipt after shopping for Christmas dinner groceries! The issues, whatever they may have been, were ones we were always able to find the answers to, the solutions, the magic touch, or just plain old ice cream worked great! Problems solved! All fixed!
In Feb of 2010, the unfixable happened!! My boys father passed away after battling lung and brain cancer for 2 long, indescribable years. After falling into a coma, he was removed from life support and so began the unfixable!
We had been divorced for quite sometime, but remained friendly. We lived a close proximity to each other which was what we thought would be best for the consistancy of raising the kids through a difficult divorce. He was a good dad and the boys were extremely close to him.
I knew God was there from the start and the morning after their father died was proof positive. God's presence was everywhere!
My youngest son who was 16 at the time called his golf coach and announced he would be playing in the 18 hole varsity tournament that very day. He had been up all night, had not been at any recent practices and had just lost his dad a few short hours before, yet he wanted to play! He played because he said his dad would have wanted him to play. On that cold day in Februrary, God was watching... On 18 holes, he shot 18 pars! A perfect round.. No bogies ,no birdies, just 18 straight pars!! There was not a dry eye among those of us who were watching. The strength, poise and charactor he had displayed at such a young age was unparalleled. God was there guiding him, guiding us all. He was saying, "this will take some time, but I am right here!"
I remember feeling a little less helpless and as I watched hole by hole, I knew I could not do anything to fix this for them..but God was already there... He had shown up that very day to give us all a glimmer of joy in the midst of the sorrow. As the time passed I had to stand back helplessly and watch them go through it all, every text book stage of grief, each one in order as if it were written just for them, the disbelief, the anger...every one displaying a new pain or revelation, a new something I yet again could do nothing about. Try as I might, I would fail in my insurmountable attempts to calm the unending storms. Every step though God was there, growing my faith, guiding and loving us through it all.

All I could do then and all I still can do is pray! I can leave it all in God's hands. God was and is always right where we need Him the most. He is armed with tons of angels, 100 SPF sunscreen, and a truck load of life jackets and He's ready to protect our kids this summer! We can rest under God's giant, striped beach umbrella because His arms are wrapped tightly around our kids and He is holding them close!

I pray for God to handle each day on it's own and to be with them all during this and all unfixable times in their lives. I pray for God to give them peace for their pain, strength when it gets tough and for God to give me signs that He is always right there, holding our joy in his grasp! God is helping me to help them. I was reminded that God knew exactly how my boys felt, He too had watched his own son suffer and die an unthinkable death. I was comforted by knowing that God loves my boys, He created them and He still has a great plan for them.(Jeremiah 29:11)
I am confident that nothing they have been through will be wasted. They will be stronger because pain builds charactor and faith. I stand on the scripture that says God turns ALL things around for the good for those who love Him!! (Romans 8:28)
I know how amazingly strong they both are because God does not give us anything we cannot handle!!!
If God leads you to it, He will lead you through it.
As a mom, a parent, you may be facing uncertainty where your kids are concerned, they may be going through some tough times, maybe they are spiraling down a wrong and destructive path, and the thought of summer terrifies you. They may have issues with drugs, alcohol, or immorality. They may be experiencing peer pressures and insecurities or they too may have lost someone close to them.
Whatever the case , please know that God will always show up! He will never leave our kids or forsake them, and for you, the worry filled parent, well, He is close to the broken hearted and He will perfect that which concerns you!! (psalms 34:18,138:8)
Yes He will perfect our concerns!! We can do all we can when it comes to our children, but when you absolutely are beating your head against the wall in sheer frustration, feeling like you have nowhere else to turn, when it looks like all hope is lost, please remember that God is our super hero! Our lifeguard! He carries us when we are to weak to carry the heavy load ourselves. He will give us rest and a calming peace and make light our burdens.

My boys will always miss their dad , but I see God's strength in each one of them. They are strong, they are fighters, they are resiliant. I am still the mom that is always trying to fix what I can, but I am letting God handle the rest, in fact, who am I kidding? I cant do any of it without God anyway!!

2 years later when Kris was graduating highschool, his coach used Kris's story at the varsity golf banquet. He said kris was his hero and that he would never forget that day and the bravery kris had shown. We too will never forget!

Lord please be with our kids always, keep them safe and protected this summer. Please give them perseverence, wisdom and guidence. Help them to stay focused on you and the plans you have for them so they can fufil your will for their lives! Please give us, peace for our lives, and a wonderful endless summer!!! Thank you! In Jesus name!
Amen


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