What do the Olympics and broken-hearted parents have in common? Not much. Only that when your heart has been broken by your child’s choices and behaviors the experience is a lot like being on an Olympic team as an untrained, unprepared athlete! Ridiculous! Absurd! Unthinkable! What an embarrassing disaster! Pretty unpleasant for any observer, too. If you bought a ticket to their event you’d want your money back. Ha!
Do you feel prepared for what you are going through? Have you had adequate training? I sure didn’t. None of us do. What can you do about it? What do you think you need to be doing to strengthen yourself?
Maybe you need to find a support group to go to. Maybe you need to make an appointment with a counselor or spend some time talking with trusted friend. Maybe you need to educate yourself more on the issues you are dealing with. Maybe you need to stop enabling. What do you think would help you? Whatever it is, make a list and start doing it! Any positive steps you take will help you get stronger and be more prepared.
I have no expectations of winning a medal in this experience. But I do want to feel good about how I “compete”, although I will compare myself with no one. How unhelpful would that be! Oh, and if this experience was an Olympic event, I’m not sure which one it would be. Whichever one is the most demanding and grueling. I think I can hear the crowds applauding and cheering us on as we push ourselves beyond our limits, doing more than we ever thought possible. The Olympic song is playing in the background and our eyes are lifted up — lifted to heaven, to our Source, our coach, like one of the American marathon athletes is doing.
Corrie ten Boom – a Dutch Christian who, with her family, saved many Jews from the Nazis during World War II and consequently spent years in a concentration camp — said it so well:
“If you look at the world, you’ll be distressed. If you look within, you’ll be depressed. If you look at God you’ll be at rest.”
I’m looking at God for the help I need. I can’t do this on my own. It’s too hard. I’m not Olympic material, are you? Where will you look for help?
This Bible verse is a great reminder where we can all look.
“I lift my eyes to the hills — where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.” (Psalms 121: 1)