Breathe Life

“I need your help. My son is pulling out his eyebrows.” was the tearful plea from Meg, a woman in my Recovering from Divorce group. I knew that Meg and her former husband were having a very difficult time co-parenting their children. In fact, they were in a “hot war,” fighting pretty much each day. It was ugly, with lots of yelling, cursing, and screaming—usually in front of the kids. It was not uncommon for the police to have to be called to referee their disputes. The kids were caught squarely in their crossfire, creating many emotional wounds. Meg’s young son pulling out his eyebrows was the painful evidence. Understandably, Meg was desperate for a solution.

My advice to Meg was simple. I told her to forgive her former spouse and end the war. Her chin dropped in disbelief before going into a 10-minute dissertation listing all the reasons why it was impossible for her to forgive that “bleepity-bleep so-and-so.” I told her she only needed one reason, and it was a great one, her kids.  I explained forgiving their father was the greatest act of love she could offer them. It would stop the war and help her kids live a life free of all the anxiety their parents were raining down on them. It would also get them out of the middle and allow them to love each parent free from choosing sides. In short, her act of sacrificial love would breathe life into their emotionally battle-weary souls. Meg’s face softened from anger to hopefulness as she said, “You know, your right.” She set her jaw and walked away with a look of determination to do the right thing for her kids.

“Whoever receives this child in my name receives me, and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me. For the one who is least among all of you is the one who is the greatest.” – Luke 9:48

Originally posted 2014-09-10 06:00:27.

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