An Invitation for a Heart Isolated

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Ah, Sundays! They were the best day of the week … and the worst day of the week.

They got me outside the homeschooling walls I’d been secluded in all week. They allowed me to sit in a room full of adults while my kids were (supposedly) safely ensconced with friends in another room. They allowed me to close my eyes and lift my hands as hope songs soothed my aching heart. I’d cling to adult conversations as long as I possibly could, often being one of the last to leave the church.

But Sundays were also weekly reminders of how we didn’t have the pretty little church family, and that I didn’t measure up as a mom. The place where I thought I’d find a nonjudgmental listening ear and to-the-core encouraging words, proved to offer only shallow accolades and “Oh every child does that” condolences. And there was always the chance some youth leader would “gently” confront our parenting techniques and challenge our behavior-earned restrictions.

Usually, church was a lovely place to go every Sunday, but sometimes I left feeling stabbed in the heart. Was there not anyone who truly cared about my pain or grasped the reality of my hopelessness? Not usually. Not there.

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No, the place for this was in my adoptive moms support group that met monthly. This was where I felt normal. And not just normal—accepted, understood, validated, and encouraged. This group was the ring thrown into my turbulent waters, keeping my head above the vortex that threatened to suck me under.

Church is great. But, there’s nothing like a group of God-fearing strugglers who understand your battle. Not a moan-and-grown group, but a group who shares strategies, Scriptures, and prayers.

You see, the family of God at it’s best meets outside the church building, and usually on a day other than Sunday. If you don’t have such a group, find one. If you can’t find one, start one. I guarantee, you are not alone in your struggles. You’re not the only mom out there who’s messed up.

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If you were to ask me what one thing got me through those difficult years (well I couldn’t say just one thing—I would include Jesus and a my husband, but also), I would say there’s no way I would have made it without my group of moms. As a group joined at the heart, we got to experience first hand the truth of 2 Corinthians 1:3-4.

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.

If you’d like a virtual group to sustain you until you find something face-to-face, let’s start one here. Send me a private message and let’s find ways to connect.

cherjohnson5x@gmail.com

 

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3 thoughts on “An Invitation for a Heart Isolated

  1. Cheri, I love hearing about your church and your adoptive mom group. We struggle with being able to attend church right not as our youngest, adopted daughter has an anxiety disorder that stems from PTSD. She struggles and we get sideways glances at church, and she is terrified to attend her classes, so my husband and I switch off taking my oldest daughter to church. This is where it is hard for us, because this church has been amazing for our oldest, but not for our youngest. And we have yet to find a church that is equal for the two. Or a church where we as parents can fit, we are the outsiders. It’s a season, I know, and I am encouraged by your post.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. After our children graduated high school we ended up finding a new church. It’s a great church but there had been too much pain for us there. As I seed to write a devotional for SAFE moms, I’ve been encouraged to reach out to churches who have a strong push toward adoption. I can tell you, every adoptive mom I know had a hard time at church.

      Like

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