Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Prayer partners who share

Through this blog, I've made many new friends, though I'm sorry and sad for the circumstances that link us. Still, I'm grateful and honored that you've trusted me enough to share your heartaches and asked me to pray with you. Thank you.

Along the way, my friends here sometimes share something with me, like a resource or a thought. A few weeks ago, P.S. (#17 on our Prayer List) sent me an e-mail: "This devotional made me think of you, Sheryl." The link took me to the "New Living Translation Women's Devotional" for July 11th. The devotional has since been replaced with the current week's. But with permission from Tyndale House Publishers, I've reposted the devotional below. I hope it helps you in some way. Thank you, P.S.!

NOTE: You can sign up for the women's weekly devotionals here. I did! The webpage also offers devotionals for men, teens, parents, and leaders.

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us.  Hebrews 12:1      

"There are times when we feel completely alone. We feel as if no one has ever experienced what we've gone through. No one could possibly know the agony of watching your child suffer from leukemia. No one could possibly know the pain of having your husband walk out on you. No one could possibly know the fear of being diagnosed with breast cancer. But you know what? There are women that have experienced the same thing. They have run the same race.

We are surrounded by women who have struggled through situations and spent countless nights crying to God for strength. They are witnesses to God's love and grace. They are witnesses to the life of faith. How did they manage to survive?

They didn't do it alone. We aren't made to live this life alone. God has given us people in our lives to run the race of life with us. This race isn't a sprint but a marathon. For anyone who has ever run a marathon, there are moments of highs and even more moments of lows. Everyone finds a point where he or she is ready to give up. Weighed down by the insecurities and doubts that slow us down in this life, you begin to feel that you can't go any further. But you're not alone. You are surrounded by others who are in this same race and struggling with the same fears and pain. They run alongside you and encourage you, helping you finish the race.

Praise God that he hasn't left us alone. As women, we have a natural affinity for relationships. Don't be afraid to ask someone for help. Allow God to direct you toward women who will care for you. Try finding an older female to mentor you. Allow stories of her struggles and faith to comfort you. Then, look for ways that you can mentor to someone else. Women of faith, we need each other. Come alongside other women and run the race of faith together."   

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Online resources

Out of curiosity this morning, I Googled "parents estranged from children" and found several other Websites on the painful subject. At (of all places!), I found a page–Mothers estranged from adult children–on the Parents Forum, where many mothers post their heartaches. From this page, I found Estranged Stories, a members-only site that must have more than 800 members. The site, which is very sophisticated, offers forums, blogs, videos, groups and chat. Since I'm not a member, I can't further describe what's there.

I also found Healing Estranged Relationships, which is based in Dallas. Estranged Parents of Adult Children is a very simple website, which also has a lengthy list of book resources. And there's an active forum at DailyStrength Groups-Parents of Estranged Adult Children Everywhere. 

What all these websites together say is that: THERE ARE MANY, MANY BROKEN BONDS IN OUR SOCIETY. You are not alone!!

Beyond prayers, I wish we could provide much more through this blog. Because we can't, I will point you toward these other sites, where you may find more of the help you really need.

God bless you.