There was a time in my life when I never thought I would live to be married or have children. It was a dark dark time and place. It was a place I created all on my own. Simply because I chose to live there. I thought, God must be sitting up there hating me because of something I did and I am going to pay for it for the rest of my life. I thought, some people get blessings and some don't. Some get answered prayers and some don't. Boy was I wrong.
I believe I would not be here today if it weren't for God having mercy on me. Also, because I stood up for myself and used His Word as my sword to fight my way out of that dark place. Sometimes, God allows us to go through things that aren't so fun. A lot of it is not His plan, but our own plan. Our own plan tends to get in the way of His plan. Our plan is much like a detour. We can follow it to the dead end or use it as the long way around and eventually get back on the right path.
I did not grow up in what I would call a Christian home. Yes, my mom took us to church sometimes. There weren't a lot of wholesome examples set for me to follow. Mostly just words, with no action. She did try to train us, the best she could. Now that I have children, it is imperative that I lead by example. These little sponges depend on me to set them on a path of righteousness. A path they will one day choose to stay on or veer off. God's word tells us that if we train them up in the way they should go, they will never depart from it. His word does not come back null and void.
I have tried since Lake was born to talk to him about Jesus. To read his bible, to pray and to love. It is those little moments when we can see that all our dedication and faith is bringing forth the fruit. When he was two years old, I was in our restroom putting on my make-up, he was playing in the den with his toys. He comes into the bathroom, smiling, and says to me, "Mommy, Jesus is in the living room." I looked at him and I said, "Oh, really? What is Jesus doing?" He said to me, "Just watching me play." I asked him if he was scared and he said, "No. Jesus is looking at me like this..." and he made this face with no expression. It was kind of funny! Well, I guess that was good... I mean, I would hate to see Jesus with a mad face. I have to believe Lake truly saw Jesus watching over him. That was not the only time he told me he saw Jesus. He told me one morning, that he was "scared in his room by himself last night but Jesus was there so he felt safe and went to sleep". Lake asks some of the funniest questions, like, "Mommy, does Jesus drive a car? Or does He just walk everywhere He goes?" The other night, Pawpaw Cooney was here visiting. We were sitting down to eat dinner and Lake asked Pawpaw if he knew about Jesus dying on the cross and coming back to life. I laughed as I shed a tear of joy. I knew that made Papaw's day, and I have no doubt Pawpaw knows that story very well.
I look back on my life and realize, there was a point at which I could have raised children in a Godly environment or not. That point came when I was in college. I was living a life of heavy drugs, borderline alcoholism and I was bulimic / anorexic. It was make or break for me. I came to a fork in the road... I was going one way or the other... but I had to make that decision. No one was going to make it for me. I had to give up a lot of friendships that were unhealthy at the time and work on creating new ones. It was a sacrifice. I also had to learn to love my body the way it was and learn to take care of it because it was the only one I had. It wasn't going to be easy, but it was going to be very rewarding. I was going to need a lot of God's help. By burying my soul into His Word I was able to overcome.
To look at my life now, I know God loves me more than I could ever imagine. He has given me a wonderful Christian husband who loves me in spite of me. He has given me two amazing children, who constantly remind me of God's favor in my life. I know I could wake up every morning and find things to be mad at God about... but I choose not to. Instead I choose to wake up every morning, thankful for another day and another chance to live for Him. I look forward to the future instead of fearing it. I look forward to the funny things Lennon will ask in regards to Jesus and the things Lake will say that will once again remind me I must be doing something right.
That is just a little of what is on my heart today. I never want to take for granted the blessings that are right here in front of me.