3.29.2010

His Heart


T-boys list of charges is the length of a child's Christmas list. Everything from simple assault to assault with a deadly weapon. To hear the stories, your mind spins with thoughts that his life is over, that there's no hope. He's on probation. For the second time. He's been to juvenile detention. He's been in group homes because he's just "too much to handle". The road seems long and hard and you start to wonder if this child who has acted like a total angel since you got him on Tuesday is fooling us.

Then.

Friday night, after telling him it's time to take a shower, he was walking toward the bathroom and spins around on the hard wood floor, "Do you go to church?" No. We don't. Without going into a long explanation of why not, we did tell him we believe in church and think it's great, it's just not for everyone.

"Well, it's for me. I like it. I learn about God and I think He loves me. Would you take me on Sunday?"

Holding a well full of tears back that had been building since Tuesday, I told him of course, just let us know where he wanted to go and we'd take him. He turned and went to take his shower, I turned and ran to our bedroom. Sobbing on my knees I cried out to God telling Him "I know you see his heart. Everyone sees his behaviors, but You see his heart. Help us see that same heart."

Isn't it the parent's responsibility to see their child's heart? I guess it would be hard if that parent is blinded by their own broken heart. I say that, BTW, with deep empathy, not judgment. If I know anything about God, He's not concerned with our behaviors as much as He is with our heart. He focuses on what our heart is saying and feeling and He touches us there. At least He does me. Our behavioral response will be the natural outflow of our response to Him working on our heart. Until a child is old enough to conceptualize that for themselves, it is the responsibility of the parent to help their children understand what their heart is saying and feeling and work with them to figure out their emotions and therefore teach them how to respond healthily.

I'm deciding not to concern myself with what his rap sheet is saying, those are the behaviors of an obviously brokenhearted little boy. I'm choosing not to look and see how long his road seems to be. It's T-boys heart that I'm starting to see and it's his heart that is giving me hope.

19 comments:

Yocumotion said...

and just how he "thinks God loves him" and sees his heart you love him and see his heart as well. what a blessing and yall are JUST what he needs stable, loving, parents who love each other and love him. God is doing some awesome things in your home! xoxox

lmt1073 said...

I am fighting back the tears as I write this. I am with you, I have hope for this young man!! He's not a bad kid, has just made bad choices and I believe he is searching for acceptance and love. He is blessed to have you and your husband in his life!! I will continue to follow your story and pray for the best outcome!

mrs. darling said...

i am crying, his heart is so sweet...so full of hope and searching for love and acceptance. i'm so thankful he has someone to love him and take him to church.

Krystyn said...

I've got goosebumps. Don't you just want to hold him and tell him everything will be okay.

What a great gift God is to him and that he recognizes it. I know you will find a good church (and maybe you guys will like it, too) and hopefully, he will flourish.

Sara said...

This post brought me to tears, happy tears, that he thinks God loves him. When he should be told to KNOW God loves him.

What a gift to him and to you as well. Praying for you to have many more blessings like this one.

Denee said...

Guilt and shame are horrendous burdens but for a 14 year old to be carrying them, the weight can be unbearable. What if he knew he was perfect - now...not later, but now. The reason so many have decided that church is 'not for them' is because the messages (many times) are so conflicting....God is love...and yet, he is jealous and vengeful. God's grace is for all...and yet, there will be a judgment day where you'll stand accountable.
No wonder we're a nation of spiritual schizophrenics.
But what if...we knew that we were all divine - now...not some mystical future day but NOW. What if we saw T-boy as perfect not because of anything he's doing to 'get right' or make restitution but because God sees him as such.
And what if he begins to see himself that way - knowing there's nothing he could ever do to lose the love of God.
I'm so in awe of your heart - don't underestimate the power of love. You're going to be so blessed!

Miss E said...

I will echo the other's sentiments: goosebumps, tears welling up, warming heart. What an amazing opportunity for you all to have each other in your lives. And like you said in an earlier post, it's still all very new. I can't imagine what experiences you have in store.

Shelton said...

If God brings you to it, He will bring you through it.God sees all and knows your love and the love in the heart of the young man.If we can help in any way, please let us know. Shelton and Wanda

Cole said...

Wow! If I could stop tearing up, I'd say something smart. :-)

God sees his heart, and T-boy knows it. What a fabulous think to know as he faces an uncertain future.

Butterfly said...

Very true...God only knows the heart of wo/man. I look forward to hearing more of you journey. Great pic by the way to go with post...May God continue to give you both discernment in all. Prayers for your cup to continue to be filled with His love to overflow over T-boy. We know He does work in ALL things..even the darkest of days. Idea: Perhaps you could share your love of photography with him. It would be interesting and possibly insightful to see how he looks at the world around him thru the eye of a camera..

Ms. Salti said...

How wonderful! This post just gave me a little tingle up my spine! I'm not a churchy person either, but felt very compelled to go to Mass w/some friends of mine a few months ago. Sometimes you just need it!

Michelle said...

I love how T-boy knows that God loves him. He does. He loves us all.

We're going through an equally as trying situation with family at the moment. Unfortunately, it involves father & son and I'm just not sure how it's going to end up. :(

I try really hard to not judge, but given the track record & the obvious evidence sitting in front of me, it's hard not to.

Ugh.

Sorry to steal your thunder girl...I guess what I'm trying to say is that you're not alone. I'm holding out for some hope, too.

Gee, why does family have to be so difficult??!

Katrina said...

Wow, that is awesome! God definitely put him with you guys for a reason! =)

Lucy said...

I think you are exactly what he needs right now -- someone who sees his heart, and who believes that God also sees his heart. Praying for you all through this journey!

Lucy Marie said...

oops wrong account. that last comment was from me.

writing4612 said...
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writing4612 said...

That is wonderful.

I've learned throughout life that the people who act tough are people who have been broken and put up walls to keep from getting hurt again.

God sees this child's heart, not all of the things he's done. Despite it all, God has never left Him. He just waits on us with open arms to come back to Him. Praying for all of you as you continue on this journey.

writing4612 said...
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