"And I will be your Father, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty. (2 Corinthians 6:18 NLT)
Thoughts for Today
Abandonment may not appear to be a form of family violence, but the impact it has on children and the grief and pain that often result prove that it is.
A parent's absence leaves a hole in the children's hearts . . . a hole that is difficult to heal. And when one parent is absent, the remaining parent tends to be overwhelmed and unavailable because raising a family is more work that one person can handle. This often leaves the child without the nurturing and intimacy of either parent.
On top of this, abandoned children usually wonder what they did to cause the parent to leave. Although reality clearly places the responsibility for the abandonment on the parent, abandoned children believe differently. They think they are responsible for everything.
Consider this …
We need our parents' love. We need to know them and know about them so we can understand how they have influenced and affected us. Robert McGee says that without this kind of relationship, we develop an emotional hunger that is in many ways like physical hunger. It is compelling and demands satisfaction.
When we cannot meet this need through healthy channels, we sometimes use sin and self-destruction as a substitute. We must learn to turn to our heavenly Father to fill the void. He is our Father and His love is greater than the natural affections of a loving parent.
Did you experience abandonment as a child? Do you sense a "hole" in your life? An emotional hunger? There is only One who can satisfy that hunger. Turn to your heavenly Father. He loves you unconditionally. He will never leave you. He will never disappoint you. Trust in Him. Let Him fill you with healing and hope.
Father, I do sense an emotional hunger. I've tried to fill it in so many ways . . . but they have only been temporary solutions. And some made matters even worse. I believe you love me. I believe Jesus died on the cross for me and wants to meet all my needs. I'm ready to place my trust in Him. In His name . . .
These thoughts were drawn from …Restoring Families: Overcoming Abusive Relationships through Christ by Janet M. Lerner, D.S.W. This study helps to minister to families caught in the cycle of abusive relationships. The curriculum deals with overcoming these abusive relationships through Christ and is recommended for use in support groups and Christian counseling.
Note: This curriculum was written especially for small groups, and we encourage people to use it that way. However, it can also be used effectively as a personal study for individuals or couples.
PO Box 22127 ~ Chattanooga, Tennessee 37421 ~ 423-899-4770
© Living Free 2007. Living Free is a registered trademark. Living Free Every Day devotionals may be reproduced for personal use. When reproduced to share with others, please acknowledge the source as Living Free, Chattanooga, TN. Must have written permission to use in any format to be sold. Permission may be requested by sending e-mail to info@LivingFree.org.