Thursday, September 29, 2011
Car Conversations and Teen Talks
She climbed into the back seat of my car two weeks ago. "How was your day?" I asked. Short brown hair falling into her eyes, she buckled her seat belt as we drove away.
After a few minutes of conversation, my teen daughter burst out, the story tumbling from her lips. Someone had made barbed comments several times that day, couched in the term, "It was just a joke."
I listened to my daughter's accounts and tears, reaching back to squeeze her hand as I drove one-handed. We tried to reason out the situation, striving to understand and read pure intentions into the person's actions. Recognizing our own human insecurities, she and I talked of forgiveness, and grace, and love-filled assertive words.
Arriving home, we sat in our driveway for a few minutes to hug, wipe away last tears, and pray for a chance to show unconditional love to this person, while practicing helpful assertive phrases. Then we gathered our belongings and started through the door to prepare lunch.
Once upstairs, God suddenly nudged me. In all of our good psychological responding, I hadn't yet filled Morgan's void up with God's truth of who she was. Rushing downstairs, I grabbed her, pulling her close to me. Whispering in her ears for privacy, I started speaking God's words to her.
"You are loved, precious, highly valued, his child, bought with a price, a daughter of the king, a new creation, the apple of his eye. The king is enthralled with your beauty. He died for you, will rejoice over you with singing, takes great delight in you, carves your name into his hand, gathers up your tears, saves you, calls you his own, created by him, as his masterpiece, created to do great things which he has created in advance for you."
Her tears fell on my shoulder as she melted into me. A sigh shuddered her, and I felt truth course through her. "Thank you, Mom," she whispered, hugging me fiercely. "Thank you, God," I mouthed quietly to my Abba Dad.
What about you? What truths resonate deeply in you about who God says you are? What experiences have you had with teen children and friendships?
(Update: My daughter is thankful for all the people in her life, and that situation is going much better now.)