Learning to run
by Lynda Miller
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A scream rang out in the room, drowning out all other noises. The realization that she was finally here sent my heart racing again. I knew I should be exhausted, but hearing her cry immediately reenergized me. I was finally going to meet her, my daughter!
First, the nurse took her for her a bath. She was not happy at all! “She’s a little feisty one,” commented the midwife. My husband and I both smiled. She was certainly showing our genes quickly. Finally, with her “torturous” bath over, the nurse brought her to me.
“Hello, Jessica, I’m your mom. I’ve been waiting for this moment for a long time.” I told her softly. I was immediately overcome with the most powerful love for my little girl and we spent the rest of that evening getting acquainted. One look into her eyes, however, and I knew I would have no problem laying down my life for hers. I also knew I didn’t deserve it, but God, in His mercy had answered my prayer for a little girl to add to my family. I was overwhelmed by His grace. This was just another reminder He had really welcomed His prodigal daughter home.
You see, the memory of my life as a prodigal is still very fresh. It seems like it was just yesterday that I was one. I'd spent so much time running from God that He had to get me lost before I’d listen to Him. Looking back at that time, I realized I’d always looked for Him, but I usually settled for more temporary love like a new boyfriend. That was my “fix” for the love I desperately craved. It never lasted and just left me feeling emptier than before.
The string of boyfriends led to a failed marriage, abortions, and single parenthood. I knew of God from my childhood, but I didn’t know Him. I was empty and barely floundering through life until my son and I took a trip to the west coast of the state. God met me in a way I’ll never forget.
Driving home, I had missed a turn and found myself in the middle of nowhere. It was dark and I was traveling with a small child. I was scared. Not knowing where else to turn, I prayed, “God, please help me find the way home. I’m sorry for the way I’ve been living and I know I need you in my life.” Less than five minutes had passed before I recognized a street sign. He had answered my prayer and I knew something was different. I just didn’t know what yet.
That Sunday I was filled with a need to go to church. Not even sure where to go, I went to the church closest to my house. I don’t even remember the sermon, but I knew it was the beginning of something totally new.
With all the work God’s had to do in me since that day, I sometimes wonder if He knew what He got Himself into. I now know that condemnation is not from Him, but from the enemy, Satan. God uses my children to teach me that when I am prone to forgetting.
I realized that the night I was lost and God found me was like that first night with my daughter. I became a spiritual baby and didn’t have the first clue about the new world I was a now a member of. I had to learn everything just like Jessica did.
When I get down on myself, sometimes God gently points me to my children. I did not discipline my daughter or my son for falling as they learned to walk. I knew their legs were not strong enough to carry them steadily. God knows the same of my “spiritual legs”. He has to remind me that, like those unsteady toddlers, when I think I can do it all by myself I am most likely to fall down. When I look to Him and rely on His timing, He will teach me to run.
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Sometimes I think we are harder on ourselves than God. He know what we are capable of doing and not doing. He is a loving and patience God, who will give us time grow. I enjoyed this word. It was right on time. God bless you.