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This morning I was journaling and waiting for my son to finish getting dressed and making his bed. I was feeling pretty low, and feeling pretty sure that God couldn’t still love me after all the horrible things I’ve done, and the people I’ve hurt. I told him about other women I knew my age who have everything I want – a close relationship with God, a stable upbringing, successful businesses, lots of kids, faithful, loving husbands, completed education. Women my age who seem to always choose right, who just have so much peace. Obviously God has affection for them. Obviously He delights in them. He probably tolerates me with exasperation at best, and outright can’t stand me in reality. I just felt so inadequate, and so far from what I hoped to be and have and do in my life. Just worthless.

So I’m crying over my journal, when suddenly my little comes in, also crying. Very unexpectedly, because I thought I’d have more time. “I can’t make my bed perfect,” he whimpers in a very small voice, very worried, frustrated, and sad.

Instantly I’m shocked, like cold water over the head. My heart went out to him, and I scooped him up and squeezed the life out of him. For a moment I just held him and we both cried. How could a 4-year-old be so worried about making his bed? Then I told him I love him, and that his bed doesn’t have to be perfect. What matters is that he tries, and that he cares. Then I started listing all the people who love him – he’s got like 15 grandparents alone (grandparents, step-grandparents, great-grandparents, step-great-grandparents, some he’s never even met). He kept going with the list, and then he told me, “At least I’m an expert at doing puzzles.” Yay for a self-esteem boost. Then we went together and I helped him straighten out his bed, and make it good enough – still with scrunched up bits that I didn’t bother trying to make smooth.

So, I don’t know, man. If God really does feel about us the same way I feel about my son, maybe He does still love me, and want to hold me and tell me everyone that loves me and everything He loves about me. I’m sure if I had more children, like these other women I envy, I would love them equally if one of them couldn’t make beds and one of them was an expert. If one was an angel who always obeyed and one was a broken addict like me. Maybe like the prodigal son and his brother? I’m sure I would hold them both, no matter how hard one of them tried to run away. I’m still struggling with believing that God might feel affection and nice feelings about me. But maybe He did give me that sign this morning. And I’m grateful for my little fiend, for better or for worse.

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“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him.”
~ Romans 15:13

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