Your word, O LORD, is eternal; it stands firm in the heavens. Your faithfulness continues through all generations; you established the earth, and it endures. Psalm 119:89-90 (NIV)
A fellow blogger posted about the dings in her car today. (http://www.thebipolardiaries.com/) It made me think of a dent in my own car. Just a little over two years ago, our life was in chaos because of our youngest son’s poor choices, anger and disrespect. We tried everything from grounding to taking away his possessions to counseling to investigating boarding school. At one point, I took him to the jail, and we sat outside its high barbed wire while I talked about how he was going to end up on the other side of that fence if he continued down the same path. Teachers constantly complained about him, and I even spent a week going to class with him in seventh grade. Nothing was working. At the time in this story, he was on the verge of being expelled from school. I had just left a discipline meeting and was so upset when I backed out of the parking lot that I ran smack into a light pole. I mean, I creamed it. At that moment, I truly felt our situation was hopeless. A few days later, I attended a women’s retreat and heard a speaker talk about prayer and fasting. She noted that we usually think of fasting as abstaining from all food, but we can choose to fast from anything, a type of food, an activity, or a habit. Whatever we refrain from, whenever we think about or crave that thing, we are to pray instead. It is a reminder to put our trust in God. Inspired, I chose to fast from sugar until the end of the school year. To know the importance of that choice, you must know that I am a sugarholic. It was hard, but every time I reached for that cookie or cake, I prayed and asked God to work in my son’s life instead. For the eight weeks of that fast, I saw God perform one miracle after another. Our stubborn hard headed child asked to go to a military school for high school. My health insurance referred us to an out of network counselor who specialized in teenage boys with anger issues. He passed his standardized tests and was promoted to the next grade. A Christian mentor came into his life that he respected. Most importantly, his heart tendered and he came to see how much havoc he was causing and he apologized to us. Today, he is doing well in school, excelling as a leader and anticipating college. He is a pleasure to be around and even tempered and kind. I can trace every bit of the change to those eight weeks of fasting and prayer. Just a few months ago, he asked me how I got the dent in my car. He honestly did not remember my accident on that anxiety filled day. I laughed at his astonishment when I told him. To him it was a banged up bumper. To me, it is a symbol of God’s faithfulness.