Tuesday, February 06, 2007

A Story of Deliverance - Part II

Give Them All To Jesus

Are you tired of chasing pretty rainbows?
Are you tired of spinning round and round?
Wrap up all those shattered dreams of your life
And at the feet of Jesus, lay them down.

He never said you'd only see sunshine,
He never said there would be no rain.
He only promised a heart full of singing
About the very thing that once brought pain.

Give them all, give them all, give them all to Jesus
Shattered dreams, wounded hearts, and broken toys.
Give them all, give them all, give them all to Jesus
And He will turn your sorrows into joy.

Matthew 11:28

"Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest."

This song re-surfaced Sunday as my SIL sang it at church. It is an Evie song that was popular back in the 70s and early 80s, I believe. (Evie came up in blog conversation a few weeks ago when I think it was Tammy of Family Doins went to a concert of hers). I hadn't heard it in years, but it fits so well with the current series Kevin and I are are doing on his wife's blog, Twenty Eight Celsius.

Please pray with us that this series will be used of God to reach someone who is feeling hopeless. We had shattered dreams. Losing a child in the sense that we did involves a death of dreams. There is a mourning that is very real. Our hearts were broken, and we didn't know the half of it.

As Kevin continued his story today, I was caught in a moment of disbelief. Disbelief that so much had happened. Disbelief that we didn't know what was happening. We knew things were very wrong, but not the extent of his lostness.

As he mentioned, all of Kev's friends in church were two years older than he and went off to college, leaving him pretty much alone at church. Not that he really wanted to be there, but his friends had given him a reason. I'll never forget the Sunday morning that God came to me in a very real way. I was in choir, searching the congregation for that blonde head. We had left him home, counting on his getting there in time. This was getting to be a very regular scenario. When I didn't see him that morning, I know my face showed my disappointment. I clearly remember sitting in the back pew that morning after the choir sang. God said to me that morning that I was hindering His spirit by my facial expressions in choir. I don't hide my feelings very well. He said that I was to relax, that Kev was in HIS hands, and that HE would bring Kevin back to Himself. I don't pretend that I never worried again, or that the road became smooth and easy. Much worse was ahead, but I had God's promise.

Kev mentioned that we didn't like his friends. That is very true. But we tried to befriend them. We often had extra guys for dinner - guys who really didn't have a home life to speak of. One of them was in a foster home. He stole checks from his foster mother's checkbook, wrote them to himself, and convinced Kev that they were child support checks and since he didn't have an account, would Kev please deposit them in his savings account and then he'd take the cash out. He was the one who, when he was eating with us one evening said, "So, you're the only family I know that eats supper together every night." I said, "I think that's very sad, and we do it because it's the only time we're all together." He answered with, "Oh, yeah, the bonding thing - I've heard about that."

There was the one who was also estranged from his mother - I don't know where his dad was. His mother had remarried and his stepfather and he didn't get along. I don't know where he was sleeping, but he ate with us on occasion. One night I said to him, "Rich, why don't you live with your mother?" His reply was, "She doesn't like me very much." I responded, "Well, I don't like Kevin very much right now either, but I love him and I won't kick him out."

I think it was Rich also who told me one day that I was like June Cleaver. I don't know if he meant it that way, but I took it as a compliment!

There was the one who was so charming - kind of like Eddie Haskell on "Leave it To Beaver." Too smooth! So smooth, in fact, that when he and Kevin got into trouble together, Kev always got caught and Tony didn't. I'm glad Kevin got caught, though it was very hard at the time.

I began to dread getting home in the evening and finding the answering machine blinking telling me that "your student missed one or more classes today." There was always an excuse - a substitute teacher made a mistake; he was late, so the Scantron bubble didn't get erased well enough and still registered him absent; etc. etc.

I wanted so badly to believe him. Everything I found and questioned him about had an answer - I could not prove anything, but I knew in my gut that it wasn't true.

Kev began to be very angry, and he was very strong. We abdicated at some point and figuratively threw up our hands, I guess. I still never forgot the promise.

I had read a lot of books, as I mentioned before. One about tough love sticks in my mind. There were all sorts of suggestions, none of which worked for us. The ones involving curfew may work for others, but not for us. You were supposed to put an alarm clock in the hall outside your bedroom at the time of curfew. Then you could peacefully go to sleep, knowing that if your young person came in on time, he/she would turn the alarm off and head straight to bed, so you would not be awakened. If they didn't come in and the alarm went off, you knew they hadn't followed the rule. Then what??

Another one was to make an arrangement with another family so that if curfew was broken, there would be a note on the door telling your rule-breaker that he/she was to go to the other family's home and they would take him in. Sure! If we had done that, we'd have never seen him again. I wasn't willing to risk that.

I rearranged my schedule so that I was always home to have dinner by 5:30. If it were later than that, he would be gone and we'd not see him that whole evening. I really wanted to keep that little connection.

The one friend he talks about who was the athletic star at school was the worst. I could not find it in my heart to have him around, and did not trust him at all. It turned out to be for very good reason.



Linda said...

Dawn - you write so beautifully. I am so totally absorbed in your story. What a heartbreak. I admire you for having the other guys in your home. I think that was so loving and gracious. I don't think I would have handled all of it as well as you and DC did.
I need to read Kevin's part now. I believe beyond a shadow of a doubt that this is going to be used very powerfully by the Lord.

Looney Mom said...

I can't imagine the heartbreak of watching your child fall further and further into addiction like that. it is so painful and difficult being a parent; it's a wonder we keep on pro-creating.

Susie said...

I am taken in my your story of this very sad time in your life. It must have weighed so heavily on you and your husband.
I'm off to read Kevin's portion of this part of the story..

Kristen said...

I have to say that I'm glad I wasn't around the house at that time of life....or was I? Regardless I never remember those guys being around, so it must've been after I moved out, or went to college or something. Either that, or I just stayed away to avoid them.

If I didn't know the end of this story, I'd have to say I'd be very depressed right now.

Lala's world said...

I really can't imagine what that was like! I know my parents went through it with my sister, thank the Lord for His Grace!

Brenda said...

The grass is always greener, isn't it? While Kev's friends were longing (secretly, of course) to have a home life like his, he was attracted to theirs. I know he is thankful that you didn't give up, and I'm sure that you made a lasting impression on his friends.

There is no doubt that God will use your story to encourage others, and I'm grateful to you for sharing it.

Tammy said...

This must have been so hard for you to go through at the time...being a Christian mom and watching almost helplessly...
And yes, seeing those words to Evie's song was so nice. Yes, it was me who wrote about her coming to my old church this Christmas and bringing back all those memories!

(And guess what? When I went to sleep over at my mom's this past weekend, she had found my old records...including my 1978 Evie album!)

kevinc said...

i had no idea that you valued dinner time like that. it hurts to read about the loss you felt, while i couldn't have cared less, about being lost.

Sioux said...

Dawn, God be with you as your carry your message to the world through your blog.

Sherry said...

i can't imagine what you were going through at the time, I'm so thankful to know the end, I'm glad you had a promise to carry you through.

Rachel said...

you guys went through so much. i'm so so glad there is a happy ending.

Anonymous said...

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Dawn said...

The person who is commenting as "anonymous" today for both Kevin and me is named Karly. She is doing her best to disrupt this story. I have asked her to let us know why she is so determined to bring down TC, but as you see, now she doesn't even have the courage to post her real name so we can reach her site. I have written her several times, but she doesn't let comments go on her site if they don't agree with her. It is sad that someone is so bitter. Please pray for her and for whomever it was that had a bad experience. Pray that Kev will not become discouraged as he tells his story of deliverance. Thank you!

Pamela said...

My heart goes out to you and your husband Dawn. I can just imagine how pained you were to know your child was hurting and slowly falling through the crack, like you said, it would be like watching a slow death.

I love that you never turned your back on him. Not liking the situation your love for Kev and your faith saw you through. I immediately warmed up to your son's heart.

I pray your story touches the life's of others struggling with drugs.

Barb said...

The feeling of losing control must have been horrible, Dawn. We went through one brief period where we were very upset with choices in friends. Luckily, our daughter was strong enough to listen to us and chose to be pretty much friendless rather than have detrimental friends. Her "best" friend ended up eight months pregnant at 13 and her mother never "noticed" until she was about to deliver that baby.

So we were blessed back then that we got it under control. You're blessed now that Kevin is strong and brave and healthy again.

Your testimonies are so well written and so honest, they're just a blessing.

Nancy said...

Great post... I am so enjoying this continuing story. What a great Mom you were and are!

Diane J. said...

Hi, Dawn. Just saw your comment on my blog. I am having some trouble with Blogger, but mainly just busy with life. I'm going to try to post something tonight after church.

I've read this on my bloglines but haven't taken the time to comment yet. I'll try to get around more often. :-)

Our family has a history of addiction, both alcohol and drugs. I know most of the signs, but you can feel so helpless to intervene. I can feel your frustration through your writing.

Praise God Kevin and your family is on the other side of this crisis today.

PEA said...

Dear Dawn...I'm finally catching up with yours and Kevin's stories. I've just read his first and second part and have left comments for him. Peer pressure can be an awful thing...I had 4 brothers who always seemed to hang around with the "bad" crowd and they all got in trouble with the law because of it. I remember being horrified, having to go visit them in jail.

When my own boys reached that certain age, I was worried sick that they would turn out like that too but thank God, they didn't turn "that" corner!

It's also amazing, though, as parents, how little we know what is really going on with our children until it's sometimes too late. I can't even imagine what you and your family went through.

Hugs xoxo

Yellow Mama said...

It is so hard seeing your children move away from God and more into the world. I remember God telling me one day or many days..."she'll be okay" and then to find out she wasn't...in my books. But, He was working things out with her and all I could see was the "stuff" she was doing. Things did change after some very hard times...

Heather Smith said...

Dawn, I just started reading yours and Kevin's story today. I'm so glad that God has turned him around. We just have to rest in those promises He gives us.
A guy that I grew up with is on this path now. It's so sad to watch because we were best friends at one time. And now he's so angry. Please pray for him.

Stephanie said...

Dawn, you have written this so beautifully. I hope I never have to experience the heartache you have had, but if I ever do, I am grateful tha you have shared your story.

Sioux said...

Just sending love tonight, Dawn! God bless you.

Kathleen Marie said...

Isn't God so good! The things we go through with our children.

You wrote - "Disbelief that so much had happened. Disbelief that we didn't know what was happening".

This was how we felt when we found out our daughter had been sexually assaulted but even more than that was how she changed, her reaction, etc... She just kind of went wild but God never abandoned her nor us.

Wonderful story of redemption Dawn!

Hugs to you!

Chris said...

I am sooooooooo glad I found your site, I find encouragement, and hope and reforcement for lmy trust and beliefe in God and what will happen to my daughter. God is in control and I need to continue with my part. The heart ache is tremendous and real and at times I feel I would not go on except for the love of God. As you said I may not like my daughter right now but I do love her and I will not give up on her.

SharonB said...

There is so much here I can identify with. Having that gut feeling ...but unable to prove anything for certain. Later...too late, I learned that my son knew how to play the game very well...he knew just what I needed to say.

cassee01 said...

I'd like to read Kev's story..my blog is ggmow.blogspot.com