Posts Tagged ‘shattered dreams’

Is Mother’s Day going to be difficult for you this year? If so, then this is for you.

It’s not a day many moms look forward to. It only brings pain. Sadness. Heartache. When your relationship is strained or mother's daynon-existent you’d rather skip it. You know you probably won’t hear from them, much less get a card.

You won’t see their smiling face greet you with affection, hand-made cards or thoughtful gifts. They’re too self-focused and oblivious for such loving gestures. They may not even know it’s Mother’s Day. They’re clueless.

Where does that leave you? Set up for a lot of hurt and pain, anger and resentment. (more…)


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I’ve been thinking about this all week. What do hurting parents and Martin Luther King have in common? I’m referring to parents whose children are making destructive, even life-threatening, choices and are facing difficult circumstances because of mental illness. The famous line in King’s speech tells letting go with starsthe answer, “I have a dream.”

Dreams. What dreams did you have for your troubled child?  Maybe they were a lot like mine.

  • To have a close, loving relationship.
  • To have their respect and listen to your advice.
  • To enjoy them and their friends while growing up.
  • To graduate from high school, then graduate from college.
  • To use their talents and abilities  to the fullest potential.
  • To get married to someone you feel good about, then have grandchildren.
  • To be a responsible, productive adult.
  • To enjoy a healthy, meaningful relationship with each other as adults.
  • To embrace your faith as their own and live lives of integrity. This would be icing on your dream-cake.

Does it still hurt to remember? Have you tried to forget – to let it all go? Do you still struggle with a nagging ache in your stomach, a longing for what could have been? Today I’ve found a lot of peace and acceptance with the disappointments, but sometimes I still feel this way.

It’s painful to watch dreams die.

What do you do with all that disappointment and regret?

How do you make peace with what you have no control over?

How do you make sense out of shattered dreams?

Here’s what I did. I remembered these things:

1. God is with me. I do not suffer alone. He’ll never leave me.

2. God understands and hurts with me.

3. He still has dreams for my child – it’s never too late. He’ll never stop seeking them.

4. God can use my pain to help me discover a deeper desire for Him.

Larry Crabb, in his book Shattered Dreams, says this: “Pain is a tragedy. But it’s never only a tragedy. For the Christian, it’s always a necessary mile on the long journey to joy.” (pg.4)

Joy? When dreams shatter we can find joy if we remember these four things. We can choose to let suffering drive us to the heart of God. And there we will find our deepest satisfaction.

In Him.

May He, the One True God, bring us to really believe that intimately knowing Him can bring more pleasure than seeing our children straighten out.

Will you choose to have an encounter with God in your pain? Bring Him your shattered dreams and see if He will become your Sovereign joy.

Here are two Scripture verses for your encouragement:

“I will never stop doing good to them . . . I will rejoice in doing them good.”  (Jeremiah 32:40-41)

Even though everything looks bad, “. . . yet I will rejoice in the Lord; I will be joyful in the God of my salvation. God, the Lord, is my strength . . .”  (Habakkuk 3:17-18) English Standard Version

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The Trayvon Martin-George Zimmerman trial is over. Many people all over the country are upset about the outcome. There have been riots in some cities. No matterpain what your opinion is, one thing is true: George Zimmerman’s life will never be the same, neither will the family of Trayvon Martin. They have this in common along with brokenhearted parents. These parents have children who are abusing substances, are in and out of jail, live with a mental illness, cut or burn themselves, have an eating disorder, and on and on.  Like the Martin and Zimmerman families, they feel like they’ve been living in a nightmare. They’ve been deeply impacted by horrific experiences. Hurting mothers and fathers have also been changed forever. Does that describe you? It describes me.

What has changed us? Shock. Grief and loss. Shattered dreams. Fear and anxiety. Ongoing stress and strain. Many pain-filled days. Sleepless nights. Condemnation of others. Seeing your child turn into a stranger before your very eyes, changed into a person you don’t know anymore. Standing by helplessly watching your son destroy his life. Being powerless to save your daughter from hurting herself. We sure are different from who we once were. But it doesn’t have to be all bad. Surprisingly, some of the changes can be good.

My experience has been that now I am stronger – emotionally and spiritually, wiser, more informed on issues I previously knew nothing about, more compassionate, more empathetic toward others who hurt, closer to my family members, and I have a new focus for my work – to encourage other hurting parents (along with my husband).

What is the main thing we all need?  Prayer.

Lots of prayer.

For inner healing.

To still offer unconditional love.

For Hope.






To take one day at a time.

O God, please help us all. We need you so much. We can’t do this without you. Thank you that with You, good can come from all the bad we have experienced. Indeed, our lives have changed forever, but  . . .

“. . . in all things God works for the good of those who love him . . .”  (Romans 8:28)


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Have you been dreading Father’s Day this year? Do you wish it would just go away? If your child is in rebellion, making destructive choices, estranged fromDSCN2313 you, or is suffering with a mental illness, then this is not a day you look forward to. It only elevates the pain and sadness you already feel. I posted a similar message to moms for Mother’s Day.This is for dad’s.

Dad, are you expecting to not hear from your child, much less get a card? They’re too self-focused and oblivious for that. They might not even know what day it is. They’re clueless. 

Where does that leave you? Set up for a lot of hurt and pain, anger and resentment. (more…)

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