Guilt Be Gone

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Guilt can be a worthless emotion. Guilt is the feeling of remorse or responsibility over an offense. How many times do I wallow in guilt that has nothing to do with ME committing a wrong or offense? How often do I allow myself to feel pain over something totally unrelated to my actions?

Today we found out about our son’s scholarship monies for his college. It was not what I was hoping for. It is given out of the school’s general scholarship fund and is based on need. In my opinion, that qualifies us for a ton of money! Didn’t happen. This fund consists of monies donated from many different places. Since this is our first year I had no idea what to expect. J did receive a separate scholarship that was much better but still doesn’t come close to paying enough. I absolutely hate the thought of him having to borrow money to go to college but that is a reality he is now facing.

What does this have to do with guilt? My first thought was that I didn’t work hard enough in homeschooling him. I wasn’t diligent enough in checking behind him. I didn’t look over his shoulder in high school, waiting to swoop down and rescue him when he strayed. Maybe I used our adoption struggles as an excuse and I failed him. I wanted to cry because some how it was my fault.

Reality is by the time our kids are in high school we expect a high degree of personal accountability. I don’t check his work all the time, or even most of the time. We have used some outside sources but most of it has been at home. Some of it has been through verbal discussion. Even more has been through J himself doing the work, checking it, correcting it and learning it on his own. My goal is to prepare him for adulthood, not make sure he gets an A in a class. I want him to have a good relationship with his family, work hard, seek God’s will for his life. He has done these things and in my heart I believe I’ve done the best I could. Yes, I could have nagged him constantly, consequenced him for his slackness and made him a miserable human being to be around. I didn’t. Yet I see in him this amazing young man with such life and depth and strength. Others are drawn to him and I know he is a gift from God.

So why do I feel guilt? Because it is from Satan. It is worthless and does nothing but tear me down. I haven’t committed an offense. I’ve made choices in my life situation and chosen to build character instead of grades. I am choosing to believe that J is seeking God’s face for college and that he is in the center of that will. I am going to trust that God will teach him through faith to seek Him for all things, including financial needs. I am still going to claim that God will provide more money for college.

And I will choose not to feel guilt over our path. Or our struggles. Or of things beyond my control.

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Comments

  1. Jenny says:

    Thanks for sharing. My oldest son is about to enter high school. Last year, after our adoption, he did a lot of learning and grading on his own. I find myself nagging at times and try to regain my focus on what really matters. We want him to focus on the Father. Thanks for the reminder!!

  2. Congratulations Marty on doing such a fine job graduating your son!!!!!!!!

    We homeschooled too!

    All our kids to honors and they were offered awesome scholarships…

    Not a single one of my kids got “full” scholarships by any means.

    Oh how I wanted them to have a “free ride!!!”

    How I wanted them to graduate college “unencumbered” by debt!!!!

    In hindsight I’m glad they had to work for it. I’m glad they’ve got the experience of paying for their commitments. I’m glad they’re learning what’s worth having is worth working for.

    We desire to give our children every good gift… so does The Father!

    The difference is The Father knows which gifts will bless our children, and which will hinder them.

    I see our children (the attached and healthy and the estrangedRADs) learning invaluable lessons as they grow and mature walking out the “difficulties” of having to finance their own education.

    Still… Oh! How I would love to have been able to hand it all to them on a golden platter!!!!

    I’m grateful there is One who knows/loves/gives/does better than I!

  3. http://www.attachmentandintegrationmethods.com/author/admin/

    My recent post on guilt vs shame

    Relevant? maybe… 😉

  4. I LOVED this post! I NEEDED to read this post today! I often get bogged down in guilt over my oldest sons. They are GREAT men but I feel like I’ve dropped the ball since our RAD adventure started. Heck, that was 6 years ago! My emotions are often up and down, my mind is scattered, my heart broken. When I share this with my sons they always reassure me they never felt forgotten and understand my time being consumed by the most squeaky wheel (unfortunately!) So you are right…that guilt I heap on myself are the lies I am allowing to torture me. Geez, I don’t need one more thing torturing me so I commit to letting the lies die!!
    Thanks for the reminder of the TRUTH!
    Much love!
    Lisa

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