I’ve been blogging again. Those of you who have signed up for updates in your email in-box, or who frequent the Facebook Page and can read when a new one is published, already know this. I’ve been posing every Wednesday and restraining myself from daily posts. I know mine is not the only one you read. Oh, but there is so much to say.
So, it’s not that I have suddenly found new time to say that things I want to say, or a stronger voice to say them. It’s that I now think I have something worth while to say.
I’ve been much more inclined to share things along the lines of ‘hey fellow adoptive or foster parent: let me tell you about the standard we should aspire to’. But when I read that kind of information from others, it leaves me wanting more. Only having information in the theoretical, rather than lived experience doesn’t seem to be enough of a motivator for me to change, when I realize I need to change in some area. Lately, I’m drawn to hearing about the real experiences of people just like me; people who blow it, but God redeems it. And I’m compelled to be one of those who are willing to share my own struggles from a more vulnerable position. Here’s where I’m struggling, who can relate and who wants to talk about it together?
This shift started subtly during the process of writing my book The God Who Adopts: Grafting, belonging and the journey toward attachment. Still yet to be finished. I thought I had said all there was to be said in that book several months ago and had literally sent it off to the self-publisher. They were doing final line edits on it and designing the cover when I realized that it needed to be more than what I was making it. And I think I’ve added 10,000 more words to it sprouting from my own personal experiences, rather than detached information.
Want to read a excerpt from the introduction?
God’s lessons to me came through the heartache of being a mother to sons struggling to attach to their new family. In sometimes horrifying and yet always liberating precision, God cut through the walls and barriers I’d build up over the years that prevented me from experiencing the abundant life that a daughter of God should have with her heavenly, adopted Father. It was easy to see the difficulties that my boys had in accepting their new positions as sons in our earthly family. Their behaviors spoke volumes. With their actions I knew they still thought of themselves as orphans, unattached. What had not been so clear, until God pealed back the deception, was that my own fleshly push-back against my place in His family echoed my sons’. My own actions betrayed the secret, kept even from myself, of my own precarious attachment to God. Oh, sure, intellectually I agreed to the truth that as God’s child I am being made new (2 Corinthians 5:17) and no longer outside the Covenant of God (Ephesians 2:12) in His family.
Mentally agreeing to truth like this is what I used to think was all that is necessary. Just believe in Jesus and receive eternal life (John 3:36) is what the preacher man on TV told me all those years ago. But behaviorally I didn’t always act like I really believed it down to the core of my being. So, did the verbal profession and mental agreement not ‘take’? We’ll talk about this more later, but God’s idea of believe means to act on that belief, not just mentally agree. It’s not enough for the orphan to read the new birth certificate which legalizes the parent-child relationship according to the laws of the land. It’s not enough to believe the legal paper grants inclusion to family. No, the mental truth of belonging (adoption) is held in storage as only potential energy until it is unlocked by action. The orphan must act on the truth of their new status. You can’t fake attachment. You can’t fake having a sense of belonging. At least not for long. Not when the trials come that really test the bond of trust. The child asks, “Do I really trust my new parents to be there for me, or do I need to hang on to some old survivals behaviors, just in case?” That is the unspoken question being asked underneath a lot of ‘bad behavior’. Just in case has no place in attachment. It has no place in the life of the son or daughter of God. But there I was, seeing the just in case behaviors of my sons and living my own just in case with my God.
I think, from time to time, I’ll post most excerpts from the book. And I would love to hear your comments. Here’s where I’m struggling, who can relate, and who wants to talk about it together?