In preparation for an upcoming interview about my book, Chasing My Father, I have a list of questions that I’ve been asked, and I’ll be sharing my responses here on my blog.
Question #4. You’ve been successful in certain aspects of your life, but in other areas you’ve made serious mistakes like two failed marriages and affairs with married men. What have you learned from your mistakes?
I’ve learned that it is very difficult for me to admit failure. I’d try to hide my mistakes, always afraid of being found out. It prevented me from really opening up to people and relaxing as the real me, fearful that my past “sins” would be revealed.
Proverbs 28:13 has been helpful: “Whoever conceals his transgressions will not prosper, but he who confesses and forsakes them will obtain mercy.”
I can’t experience God’s mercy if I can’t admit to my mistakes. That feeling of unearned love, not when I succeed but when I fail, tells me how much I am loved for who I am, not for what I do. He loves me and forgives me even when I stumble. It is through His grace and mercy that I’m relieved of the burden of my sin.
Looking back, I was in control and would make all the decisions. Now I pray about the events and relationships in my life before I act. Jesus taught us to pray first when He would go off into the wilderness to ask His Father for direction.
I got married twice for the wrong reasons: first because I was ‘30’ and it was time to start a family, and the second time because I felt all alone in the world after my mother’s death in 1990. If I had prayed to God first, I’m confident He would have said, “Wait until I send you the right man,” and “You are never alone; I am with you always.” I don’t regret my marriages, but they were mistakes. I should have prayed about the unions before I said, “I do.”
So I’ve learned:
1. I can’t obtain mercy if I don’t admit my mistakes,
2. God loves and forgives me, even when I fail,
3. Big decisions, like who to marry, need extensive prayer to God for direction before action.
There are times in your life when a mistake is costly and, as painful as it is, you have to walk away from a bad situation. If someone or something (an idol) is keeping you from loving God above all else, you have no choice but to distance yourself from it. It is important to admit your mistake, receive God’s grace and love, and move on.
It’s hard, but sometimes you have to walk away.
A Note to My Readers: Have you read Chasing My Father? If you have a question, please enter it in the “comments” below. Click on this link for ordering information for the book.
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