We were so encouraged! My 12-year-old and I heard an amazing story Saturday night from Mandy Harvey of America’s Got Talent. She was on the talent show last summer and captured the hearts of viewers with her beautiful voice and tremendous tale of perseverance in the middle of the darkest time. Mandy lost her hearing while she was studying music and felt the world around her had shattered. But she found hope!
As we listened to Mandy’s description of the loss of her hearing and the downward spiral it sent her on until God used her dad and others to help bring her back, it triggered a memory in the back of my brain. I had an experience that, although not nearly as serious, bore some similarities to Mandy’s journey. So, I whispered into my tween’s ear, “This reminds me of some of my story about how God led me into radio. I want to tell you about it on the way home.” Alyssa’s chocolate browns sparkled as she looked up at me with a big grin and a nod and I wondered, why haven’t I told her this story before?
In the car I told my girl about how right before I went to Tennessee to study music education, I began having popping and pain in my sternum. That triggered months of hopping from one doctor’s office to the next, trying to find out what was wrong. Since I could no longer sing or play without immense pain, I had to drop all voice and piano classes. This really saddened me because…
I WAS UNDER THE IMPRESSION THAT SINGING WAS MY ONLY SKILL. IF GOD WASN’T GOING TO USE THIS TALENT TO GLORIFY HIMSELF AND DRAW PEOPLE TO HIM, WHAT WOULD HE USE? I REALLY FELT THERE WAS NO OTHER OPTION.
I had to replace the classes I dropped, so I picked up communication courses which, it turned out, I LOVED! On my first day working at the radio station on campus, I was geeky excited. As I sat down and pulled on my headphones, I felt something I’d never felt before. I felt I was getting a glimpse of my future. Something in my mind said, “This is what I’m going to do for the rest of my life! THIS is how God is going to use me!” Twenty-three years later, I can say He has.
Alyssa was so into it. She let out a gasp/shriek when I told her about putting on the headphones. Even better than that, I could tell it encouraged her faith. This real experience reminded her that God is at work in her life, too. Isn’t that my biggest job as a mom…to help her grow in her faith?
Our kids need to hear the stories of how God interrupted us or helped us see things in a whole new light or simply showed up in a way that couldn’t be denied. As I tell my stories, I’m pointing her to Jesus. And, for me, that’s what being a mom is all about. [Oh, and the pain in my breastbone? It’s gone, thankfully. We believe it was a first symptom of a chronic pain disease I was diagnosed with a few years later. The journey is not always easy, but it continues with grace and patience.]
Do you regularly share your God stories with your kids? If not, is there one you’d like to share? Write it out in for practice. Then, grab some couch time and share the adventures of your faith with those precious gifts you’ve been given.