Learning Through Affliction
"It is good for me that I have been afflicted, that I might learn Your statutes" Psalm 119:71 (Amplified).
Probation restrictions for our prodigals are often hard on the whole family. House arrest is a time I found particularly stressful. Even though our son was home we felt certain restrictions as well, never knowing when the probation officer would drop by.
The questions: Would our son be there when he came? Would he sneak out after we went to bed or after the officer left? Could we trust him not to steal from us? If he didn't have driving privileges how could we arrange to get him downtown to check in or to court. How long would it be before he broke probation and ended up in jail?
One particular time he did break probation and decided he would turn himself in. He asked me to take him downtown. As we sat in the lobby other boys there kept saying, "Run before they get here to take you back". I kept praying they would get there quickly so the agony would be over. Our son finally put his hands over his ears and refused to listen. I was so thankful he wasn't fighting the inevitable but taking responsibility.
The sheriff arrived to take him to jail. Once again I watched as he was taken away handcuffed, peering out the back window, looking so much like a little boy. My heart broke but I knew it was the right thing to do.
It was very hard not to run after him, to rescue him, but something had to change. Maybe this would get his attention. I left praying for him and for the strength for myself to let go and let God do the work needed. I prayed for his protection and for God's mercy.
Maybe it is time for you to stop rescuing your loved one from difficult consequences. Maybe it is time to realize it may be good for them to be afflicted. The best lessons in our lives are often the most difficult. It could be the time they learn God's statutes and make a lifetime change. If you are not in this situation right now I pray that you will make right choices if the next time comes. It will be hard but hopefully it will produce positive results.