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Dear mom. A letter to you from a former troubled boy.

I can’t image how my mom felt when I came up the stairs from the basement, wild eyed, and with everything I owned. She opened the back door and let me leave. She later told me, “I knew all I could do from there was to pray for you.” And that was the most powerful thing she could have done.

Moms, I want to encourage you for Mother’s Day. I want you to receive a gift you may be afraid to receive. It is the gift of hope and a big ole hug. Your boy, your son, he is going to be okay. I have seen my wife morph through so many phases of our youngest son’s life. Every season brought on a new level of prayer. Kneeling next to our bed, in her prayer closet, driving, at night before bed. Tears of fear, anger, and joy. You know, if you have a boy with any spirit to him at all, he has had you there. You may be there right now!

If you are a single mom, you have most likely read or heard the statistics that your son, your boy, is facing a difficult uphill battle to make it. Fatherlessness is almost a trendy ministry and outreach nonprofit right now. For you it’s no game, it’s not a soundbite or a test, it is real. Mom, he is a good boy at heart. You took time to love him well, teach him right and wrong. It is inside him. Of course, you might be thinking, “Well if it is inside him, how do I get it out?” You don’t.

Every boy needs to go out and take his hits. Along the way, men will give him bits of advice, information, clarity. Only a man can train a boy to be a man. It may be a coach, an uncle, a neighbor, a guy from church. But he will be given the information. Your prayer needs to be for that. That the men are good men, Godly men, men who can speak into his life. Not just invite him to a Sunday school class or church on Sunday but a place that gives your son the chance to begin to make choices, better choices. 

A boy is physically created to move away, push away, from his mother. It is a true, medical fact. (More on this in another conversation.) So don’t take it personally. He can also be angry inside if dad is not in the picture. A boy lives his whole life, even into manhood, wanting to hear his dad say, “I love you. You matter to me. Job well done.” Without that he can drift way off course. Even in homes with what seems to be perfectly good families, intact, it happens.

Know that your boy is also one of the biggest threats to Satan. Satan does not want dads to be there and succeed, and he wants boys to be distracted from ever knowing Jesus. He does it with divorce and dads not being there, video games, electronics, sex, drugs. He is pounding on our boys like never before.

He is still your boy. He is inherently designed human and longs for good and family and love. He may just be in a hard place and not know what to do. Okay then, we have to pray. You also have to make a decision here. Is he yours or is he God’s? Can you truly take your hands off and give him completely over to God? It may be the hardest thing you could do, but you have to. 

It was over ten years before I came up out of my drug-induced tailspin. Mom tells me she prayed for me that whole time. She heard I was alive on occasion, but I don’t think it was very comforting. And then, God came and I woke up. So mom, the statistics are real, the hardships for your boy can be real, but it does not have to define him. It does not define him. God does that and you can be praying for him. Thank you for being a mom. Praying joy for you and God’s touch.

Let the Lord fulfill all your requests! The good news: Our hearts are filled with joy when our prayers are answered. Psalm 20:4-5

God Bless, TJ Greaney / KOZ

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