Posted by: gtcounseling | June 16, 2010

Trusting God With Your Adult Child

Dear Grace.

 I am a desperate mother of a 36 year-old son whose father died when he was in his late 20’s.  His father had severe personality problems that separated us and hurt my son badly emotionally. He even thinks he has inherited his father’s personality disorder. He is unable to keep friendships with women who say he is overpowering and controlling, same as his father.  My son experienced traumatic times when we moved away from his father as life had become too much for me. I did not know the Lord then, but God shielded us through it all.  I then studied as a nurse so I could have a career and bring them up. Then, I met a man who had domestic problems with his own wife and left my husband to marry him, which I know now was wrong.  Yet, together we brought my two children up and several grandchildren.  But our son, who is sweet and kind, suffers from depression and blames me for everything including his failed friendships.  He knows I believe that to have a good friendships you must be in the Lord with the Holy Spirit helping and guiding, etc.

We live in England and do not know where we can get help.  We are blessed though, because on top of all this and my regrets of marrying,  the Lord gave me and my husband missions work to do together. It is as though He has forgiven me for marrying another man who had a wife even though he says they were having problems. Yet, I am hurting because of my son.  He goes through these personality crises and I don’t know what to do.  He received the Lord Jesus in his heart and was baptized, but now he is just argumentative and justifies poor choices like having the right to live with a girlfriend as husband and wife. He twists the Word of God and is very eloquent to where I cannot answer him even though I know where it is wrong. He is very intelligent, but he has had a lot of trauma in his young life and is badly affected periodically.  He follows the Lord, but has dark feelings, isolates himself and goes more into the world or withdraws.  He uses me as a punching bag, but by God’s grace I take it. I often get up early and pray, crying to the Lord.  My son will not approach anyone he knows about his problems and the fact that he may have behaviour inheritance from his father.  He loves his father and misses him. What can I possibly do more to help him in his situation? Any guidance you can offer would be sincerely appreciated.

 God bless you,  Elvida

Dear Elvida,

I am glad you wrote in to Grace Tree’s Interactive! blog. As a parent of young adults myself, my heart goes out to you in what sounds like quite a complicated situation. Hopefully I can be of some encouragement as the Holy Spirit leads. In looking at the big picture of what you shared, a few basic things stand out in terms of family relationships, guilt and responsibility. First, in terms of your own past mistakes and remarriage, remember that our God is a big God who is merciful and always loving toward us. There isn’t anything his grace can’t cover. And, while your choices have had real consequences you’ve all had to bear, in his forgiveness he often restores us beyond what any of us deserve. I am glad you and your husband are being used in mission ministry and pray you go forward in your service in all the confidence his love offers.

Second, it s always our calling to love and pray for our children no matter what. Yet now, your son is well into adulthood and fully responsible for his own life and walk with God. Instead of you continuing to bear the weight and guilt of your past mistakes it sounds like it’s time for you to get more closure in making your own peace with God and taking him at his word that you are fully a ‘new creation’ in Christ and all your sin, past, present and future, has been removed ‘as far as the east is from the west.’ It’s not doing you any good to live your life while constantly looking in the rearview mirror. When we live that way, we are impaired by not having a full forward view of all we are and can be in Christ according to his riches and blessings for us. The best thing to do is live for him and love boldly, yourself and son included, and release your adult son to God to do the same supernatural work in his life as he’s done for you! Keep offering your son your wisdom and guidance in key areas of his life, be that needed Godly role model, pray for him and be there for him, but also allow him the same free will God does to make his own choices in life. Even if he stumbles and falls at times, God’s promise is that none of ‘his sheep’ can be lost and he will leave the ninety-nine to rescue the one. We serve an extremely loving and faithful God who can be trusted no matter what circumstances seem like to us. God will be faithful in your son’s life, so keep developing and fine-tuning your trust in him in that respect. I wish all the best for a bright and blessed future for your family Elvida and may you keep resting in God’s infinite grace and provision for you all.

Sincerely, Carole L. Miller, LCSW-C



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