Lights On, Windows Open!
Read: “Make this your common practice: Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you can live together whole and healed.” James 5:16 (MSG)
Reflect: Growing up, I shared a bedroom and a double bed with my big sister. One evening when I was 11 years old, my mom and dad called me into the kitchen by myself. I had been aware that my 16-year-old sister was crying herself to sleep recently, but hadn’t asked why. Calmly and quietly my parents told me that my sister was pregnant.
Before I had time to absorb that news, they asked if I knew how a pregnancy happens. Even though I said yes, they proceeded to explain the birds and the bees to my pre-adolescent self. I’m pretty sure I didn’t move or breathe until they were done. Their last words before they sent me off to bed were, “Give your sister a kiss and tell her you love her.” And I did.
My sister stayed in our home for the next few months and then married the father of her child. She gave birth to a beautiful baby boy who always knew he was wanted and loved. Though this was not the timing she would have chosen, this is the child she continues to love to this day. Her son is now a grown man with children of his own.
Looking back now, I realize my parents were modeling a “lights on, windows open” lifestyle. I knew of other situations where pregnant girls were sent away and returned months later, empty handed, with no explanations given. I’m grateful to my parents that they allowed us to walk through this difficult season with honesty and love as our guide.
React: Is there a circumstance that is causing you to cry yourself to sleep? Find a safe person to confide in who will guide you toward healing and wholeness.
Pray: Father God, thank you for loving us in spite of our mistakes and imperfections. Help us to love ourselves and others the way you love us.