This past lent 2018 the Lord really opened my eyes to the damage my sin has caused others and let me experience the suffering of those who are in purgatory. I came to understand that in purgatory I will be 100% aware of every single sin I committed and the damage that every single one of these sins caused. I saw the ripple effects and how far reaching and deep the damage is. This is the pain of purgatory and the suffering is done without the grace or presence of God, which intensifies the suffering greatly. The worst effect my sin has is hardening others hearts towards God. I am literally helping to send people to hell through my sins. The Lord particularly showed me the damage I caused my eldest daughter, Eden, by my sins and told me that I can heal some of this damage by making amends, admitting to her the damage my sins caused her and asking her forgiveness.
I wrote Eden, who is almost 19 now, a letter the day the Lord revealed these things to me which I feel the call to share. I share in the hopes that it will be a guide to those who may need to write a similar letter. Before I share I am going to give a little background information. I became pregnant with Eden outside of marriage, outside any kind of stable relationship at all. I was 23 years old when I gave birth to her and was single. When Eden was 9 months old I met a man whom I them lived with on and off for 5 years. This man was good to Eden and she called him dad so when he left Eden was devastated. Until I met my husband, Rob, I partied a great deal and was living a life of grave sin About Me. This unstable and sinful life was not conducive to raising a child. Not well anyway. The following is the letter I wrote to Eden this past lent 2018.
To My Dearest Eden,
Oh where do I begin? There are a million thoughts and feelings racing through me. I think back to when you were a baby, a toddler and a little child and oh how I wish I could go back in time and be a different person/mother to you. I wish I could or was the person/mother I am now when you were growing up. I see so clearly now (as God has been revealing in a very deep and sorrowful way) the horrible effects my sinful life had on you and I am so sorry for it and ask you to forgive me. My heart breaks inside me at the memories. Eden I was so caught up selfishly in my own life and in a life of great sin. I neglected you in so many ways. I neglected our relationship, I neglected to raise you up knowing, loving, and serving God. I was not a good example to you as I was not consistently living a holy life nor was I the person God created me to be. And you were the innocent victim of my Godlessness, of my sin. There were so many things I should have taught you about life, love, God, spirituality, etc. and I didn’t, not even through my example. And now I see you struggling, I see you in pain, in slavery to the world and to sin and I take full responsibility for all of it. I failed you Eden and I truly see that now. I know I don’t have to go into detail because I think you know just as much as I do how I failed you, wounded you, sinned against you, and ultimately hardened your heart towards God and the wonderful life He has for you.
Oh the sorrow I feel is too much to bear! I want you to know that I would suffer all things for you. I would die 1000’s of horrible deaths for your happiness. And I’m not talking about the horrible “so called” happiness the world offers. No I’m talking about the joy and peace the Lord offers. I’m talking about the freedom and utter joy you feel when you are becoming more and more who God created you to be. When you are no longer a slave to addiction, to sin, or to the world but can enjoy the relationships in your life and the world as God meant for them to be enjoyed. This is freedom Eden. Not living as the world would have you believe you should live but how God intended in the very beginning, before man turned away from God. Eden you are buying into the lies of the world and there is only despair and destruction there. I’ve lived it, I’ve been there and I would not go back for all the money and power the world has to offer. I have tasted and seen what God’s ways are like and it is absolute bliss. Worry, anxiety, depression, despair, addictions and slavery can no longer touch you and hurt you. The truth absolutely sets you free.
Oh Eden how I hope and pray that you will one day experience this freedom. I hope and pray you will find your way to God. Sin darkens our sight and our ability to find God. But find Him you must. You will find Him in the areas of your life where you feel truly alive, where you feel free. Like when you are singing, or drawing, or painting or listening to a very beautiful song. God has hardwired us to find Him in the beauty of His creation, in the innocence of a newborn baby, in the rhythms of a song, in the quiet moments, in the calmness, in the present moment I have a present for you!! , free from distraction and noise, free from regret, depression, anger, and selfishness. Never stop searching for the truth for if you never stop you will find it. God will reveal Himself to you if you give Him an opening. He wants to be found. He wants to heal you, love you, give you freedom, transform you, and make you whole. He wants to be united with you for all eternity and He wants us to be together for all eternity as well.
I see so clearly the path of destruction a sinful life creates. How it destroys everything it touches. I’ve seen it happen in my own life. God’s ways are so much better! I’ve seen how lust and greed can hurt so many people. I’ve seen how gluttony and sloth can destroy. I love you dearly my beautiful child. I see so clearly the person God created you to be. It is you without the hurt, the pain, the sin, the slavery. Just perfectly you! I have all the hope that God will lead you ever so gently to himself, just as He has done for me. I rejoice already, for He is gentle, kind, compassionate, and loving. I know He wants you to be with Him even more than I want it, so it will happen. Despite my sin and failings, and despite your sin and failings because God is greater than anything. My only prayer for you is that you will find God and that you will come to know, love and serve Him. For if this prayer is granted God will take care of the rest.
Love you for eternity,
Eden came over for dinner one night and read my letter. She was moved and was very happy to receive the letter. She forgave me without hesitation and said she had already forgiven me for everything. What a kind and sweet girl she is. She also told me that I did raise her to know, love and serve God but that it is her choice to make and not mine. How right she is. I realized that after doing my part by making amends I now need to let go and let God. Eden has free will and she will make her own choices now. I am no longer responsible for the choices she makes as an adult. All I can do now is pray and trust in God’s love and mercy.
Is there anyone in your life whom God is calling you to make amends with? Don’t wait too long! You or that person could be gone today and then it will be too late.
Have you already made amends? If so please share. I would love to hear.
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