Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Black Sheep of the Family (10/03/13)
TITLE: My Daughter, My Darling
By Deborah McDade
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Black Sheep? No! Beloved Daughter!
Mistakes/Bad Choices? In abundance!
Raised Right? Taught the ways of God from childhood.
But, did YOU live it? As best I could, no egregious episodes of unfaithfulness to God.
What Happened? Here’s the story ~
My daughter was 17 ¾ when she bolted from our house. She loaded up her little white truck, the one she bought with her own money working a job after school, and took off for parts unknown. She’d been an honor student, already accepted into several colleges, and we were stunned.
Except for an 800 number that she grudgingly gave us, we had no idea where she was, until I received a call from the FBI several months later, letting me know who and what she was involved with now. The situation was unbelievable--immoral, dangerous, and illegal.
What to do now? Consult with an attorney.
The response? She’s turned18, nothing that can be done.
Unrelenting anxiety, gut-wrenching tears, and indescribable heart pain went on for several years. We did not see her during that time. There were just sporadic phone calls that were disjointed and disheartening.
Crying out to God, He responded with loving reassurance about His love for her along with instructions for us to love her, love her, love her whenever the opportunity arose. He also told us to pray and to get everyone we knew to pray. We did, daily!
Time passed and the man who beguiled her into the situation was sentenced to 20 years in a federal prison; yet, she continued on--business as usual while he directed things from his cell.
There were brief visits home after that, but always she returned to her “new” family. Finally, there was the terrifying phone call indicating that she was in extreme danger while vacationing in Hawaii. That eventually brought her home, unharmed, but shaken.
Did she stop then? No, but it was the beginning of the end.
A brush with near death and then a stint in jail where she was all alone, no one and nothing to dull the conversation between God and her. Memories of scriptures learned as a child, a reality check about her choices, and terror about the future finally brought surrender. She left that jail cell wanting her soul back.
Has the path back been smooth? Not in the least, but our daughter has steadily moved forward toward the goal of redeeming her life. She is nearly done with nursing school and about to have her first child. Best of all, she has once again embraced her family; ever grateful for the unconditional love and grace she’s been given.
We are often amazed as we continue to hear from people who prayed for her and want to know how she is doing.
Scriptures say that love never fails, that love is the greatest of all things, and that faithful prayers are heard. Praise God, it is true! We are humbly thankful.
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