Saturday, November 13, 2010

A hard week

It has been a tough week for Caleb. It all started on Monday. During the afternoons I'm usually resting or having my quiet time and I think I have put the fear of God in them to not interrupt me during that time or else. So it's a pretty big deal when they do. And without even knocking Caleb walked in. He had a distraught look on his face and tears in his eyes. I sat straight up, urged him to come sit in my lap and asked him what was wrong. He said he didn't want to play in his footaball game on Saturday.
I asked him why and he said because his coach yells at him. I asked him what the coach yells and he said, "To go get the flags" but he said it's the way he yells at him. I told him I'd talk to daddy and daddy would talk to him later that night.
I honestly thought that after Brian talked with him all would be well but it seemed like his fear got worse. Brian and I talked through whether the coach was being too hard on him or if Caleb was just taking it hard. He had practice Tuesday night and we watched the coach and he seemed to be encouraging Caleb. Granted, he is a pretty intimidating guy so I can imagine what it must feel like to have him yell at you during the excitement of a game. And knowing Caleb and his sensitive spirit and his people pleasing tendencies I could see how this was hard for him.
But with each passing day and each talk we would have with him he would continue to say things to us like, "I will pay you twenty dollars if I don't have to go to my game" and "When he yells at me it feels like a bad dream."
It was heart breaking to hear those things and I felt powerless to help him. Then it finally dawned on me...what do I do when I'm struggling with fear, anxiety or frustration? I go straight to God's Word. So I found some pertinent verses for him; such as, "Be strong and courageous" in Deuteronomy 31:6, "Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid." in John 14:27. I then went on to ask him, "How can you be strong?" He didin't know so I took him to Phillipians 4:13 which say, "I can do everything through Him who gives me strength." Then I asked him if he knew why I go to the bible when I'm struggling and he asked why and so I took him to Hebrews 4:12 that says,"The Word of God is living and active...." and told him how powerful Gods Word is. We taped these verses to his mirror and he said he would think about them when he was struggling.
It has got to be one of the hardest things to watch your child deeply struggle. We went to community group Thursday night and shared our burden for him. With our group we talked through all the scenarios and what would be the best way to shepherd his heart in this. As a mom I want to shield him and protect him from pain but by God's grace I know better. I know that it's not about his game on Saturday but it's about his journey. It's about teaching him to press on.
I couldn't sleep last night. I couldn't wait to get up this morning and say to him, "Caleb, look at me. I am so proud of you. Do you know why? Because you put your uniform on and you are facing your fear today. I don't care if you go out there and catch one flag, five flags, ten flags or twenty flags...this moment right here is what I am most proud of. You are a brave warrior. You are not a brave warrior by winning or being successful but by facing your fear and marching on and you are doing just that and today you are my hero." He had tears rolling down his cheeks. We hugged and it was a sweet moment.
Brian asked him last night what would be the worst thing that could happen during his game...hoping to bring some levity to his fear, and he said, "That we would win and we would have to play again." Well, they did win this morning and they did have to play again this afternoon and I am so proud of that kid.
He ran hard. He dove hard. He got hurt. He had tears and we went through it all right there on the sidelines with him; cheering him on like crazy and comforting him when he got hurt. It was by no means an easy day for him. But he faced it and he did it.
As I am reflecting on this week and this day, I think about how we can't promise an easy life for Caleb with no fear and struggles but we can promise to walk through each and every one with him shouldering some of his burden, comforting him in the midst of it and cheering him on on the sidelines and I see so clearly how Jesus walks with us. In just the same way, He doesn't promise us an easy life but He promises to never leave us nor forsake us and I have no doubt He feels the pain I feel when I'm struggling because I definitely hurt when Caleb hurts. Moments like this make me fall to my knees and thank my Saviour for the way He loves me as I cannot grasp it but can get a taste of it.
It's been so good to see Caleb tonight back to his goofy, silly self. I imagine we are all going to sleep well tonight.:)


Janelle said...

Lisa, what a great lesson you are teaching him - even more than conquering fear - but where to turn during ALL of our struggles. Great post & so excited to see God moving big in Caleb's life!!

Leventhal Family said...

Good stuff Lisa! You are indeed raising up a warrior...a Godly Warrior! Keep pressing on!

MommaJ said...

Wow, Lisa. That was an amazing post. The way you are weaving God's Word into Caleb's life is inspiring. He is a lucky boy to have you as a Mom!