What if I told you this picture would never have happened a few months ago? What if I told you that a few months ago these kids and their families were nothing short of enemies. A daily battle waged against each other and their parents. BUT, what if our greatest friendships are sometimes found across the enemy line… and that line was drawn by the devil himself. What if, what God knows is good, the enemy will seek to destroy?
You see when we arrived here just a few months ago, it was crazy. I had already established a few good Facebook friends and I knew it would be okay here with this new set of friends. Then life was thrown, more like launched in our faces— like a giant catapult of culture shock and adjustment. Blow after blow! Our kids cried and we did too. They struggled. To be honest all the kids did. My son became a spontaneous wreck as evil words spewed from his mouth. He cried. He screamed. Our daughter never slept, we never slept and we really retreated into all but survival. Facebook pictures showed smiles, but on the other side we were truly falling apart.
In those same months all the parents went into survival mode. I’m going to be honest that when the battle is waged and the the smoke is thick, its hard to see who’s firing and who’s in the same trench with you. It’s hard to remember who is fighting who. You see I was too caught up in my own struggle to see the other parents grasping and surviving. My mama bear mode went into beast mode, and I was out to defend and save the two amazing littles that God so instrusted me.
You see though that’s the problem with Momma Bear mode. It taints your vision. It’s causes you to only see through one lense. This one particular family struggled. They were having a hard time, and often when two kids are going through hard times they take it out on each other. Instead of lifting each other up, we chose to bring each other down. Instead of praying against THE enemy, this woman became the enemy. No, we never became like the Real Housewives, but I promise you— I was not supporting her and if your are not for someone you really are against them. Instead our kids yelled about their kids, and we allowed it. We fed into to it, we blamed each other— instead of the enemy.
You see that is what the enemy seeks to do— kill our joy, steal our calling, and destroy our friendships. He is out to defeat us. We were just so caught up in cross fire, that we forgot who was firing.
Now, I wouldn’t be typing this if there wasn’t purpose. Through this and the battle that waged for 3 months— God chiseled. I began to humble myself to him and pray. Asking God to fix the situation. We selfishly were praying to change them, to change their hearts. After a horrible eruption of events, God stirred my heart in the middle of the night and asked me to pray. He spoke to my heart to pour light into the darkness. No, I had never bad mouthed this woman to anyone, but I certainly wasn’t encouraging her either and speaking kindness.
It was different, but I looked for every opportunity to speak to others about her beauty, her patience and her amazing friendships. I took time to pray for each and every one of her children. And then it happened, one day I got a text asking for coffee. Now this was not just coffee, but two white flags! It was crossing into No Man’s Land. In these two plus hours over the rain in a coffee shop in Costa Rica we sat and tore down the immense wall the enemy had successfully helped us to build up. We cried. We spoke truth, and saw on that day we had more alike that different.
The realness of the moment, was when we learned that we both had began to pray for each other around the same time. That God had spoke to her in the same way.
I look at this picture, and I see God’s grace. I see the beauty of a battle won. I see how an incredible friendship was almost lost, simple because we lost focus and misfired. Watch your battle lines ladies, because the enemy likes to draw them where they don’t belong.
(AND an additional side note, my dear friend read this to approve the post and agreed-- this is OUR story and should be shared. Let us not let another friendship fail because of misfires to one another, when the real enemy is already defeated on the cross. I have no doubt that what the enemy tried to use to destroy this friendship, the Spirit will use to shine light on the only one who give loves and grace.)
You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. — Genesis 50:20 NIV