Confessing the Attitudes of My Heart

Barbara Rainey

For several years I was part of a mom’s prayer group in our school. We prayed for revival in our school and in our children’s lives.

Every time I would begin to pray the Lord always brought me back to myself. I couldn’t pray for revival in our children’s lives without feeling like it was an incomplete prayer—I needed spiritual renewal as well.

Then, in the fall of 1995, I began to sense God working in my life in an unusual way. For many years as a parent I had struggled with feelings of anger toward my children. I was diligent in rectifying my mistakes when I made them—for example, if I yelled at the children and shouldn’t have, or if I disciplined them out of anger, I would ask their forgiveness.

But now I realized that He wanted me to deal with the attitudes of my heart which had led to the anger. And, oh, that was difficult—to see my selfishness and my desperate need for Him.

God directed me to gather my children together to confess this to them. So on the night before Thanksgiving we gathered in the living room. Dennis and I talked about how God had been working in our lives during the previous months. I told them I wanted to make sure nothing I had done in the past would hinder them from experiencing the fullness of God in their hearts. Through my tears I confessed my sinful attitudes, and asked for their forgiveness.

They had never seen me like I was that night. So I think they were a little stunned, a little shocked. But one by one each of them forgave me.

Now, looking back over the years, I can see how God has worked. My relationship with each child is much deeper—God’s peace is there. God began a process of spiritual renewal and awakening in our entire family that still continues.

Copyright © 2005 by FamilyLife. All rights reserved.

 

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