It’s my fault, God! – by Janet Page

I hung up the phone in shock.

My younger son, Zac, had just been suspended from school. I couldn’t believe it.

How could my son do such a thing? He knew better. We had taught him not to do things like that. Why?

I knelt down and asked God why Zac had done this.

Don’t ask God that question if you don’t want to know! As I read my Bible, God showed me that it was my fault. God impressed me that a certain behavior my son had seen in my life through the years had made him think it was OK to do what he did.

I was devastated. I repented, confessed my sin, and thanked God for forgiveness.

I am so grateful that God’s Word says, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9, NKJV).

I’m sure my son expected a scolding when he arrived home. Instead, I shared with him what God had shown me.

“Zac”, I said, “I have confessed it as sin, and I know God forgives me, but will you forgive me for being a bad example to you?”

I will never forget the look on his face or the tears in his eyes. That day I saw my rebellious young teenager soften before my eyes.

Zac is all grown up now. He is a pastor who is very in love with Jesus. He is passionate about seeing souls won to God’s kingdom.

There is much more to his story and how God led me, as his mom, to change my behavior. But one thing I know without a doubt: If we will spend quality time with God, reading His Word, asking Him to lead, and listening to Him, Jesus will guide us in our family relationships.

So many times God has impressed me while I am reading the Bible to do something or stop doing something. I’ve not always wanted to hear it and have sometimes refused to do it. How I regret those times! Looking back, I’m so thankful that this time I listened and obeyed.

Humbling ourselves and admitting our mistakes to others, whether family or anyone else, is eternally priceless. Over the years I have learned that all powerful prayer begins with a teachable spirit.

Janet Page, General Conference prayer ministries coordinator

NOTE: In case you missed last week’s Prayer Focus & Note from Erton Köhler, President, South America Division, you can view those by clicking HERE! We also have one new additional request for this upcoming week.

Practical Application: 

When things go wrong with loved ones, especially our children, it’s easy to cast blame on them, and to be harsh and judgmental. But what if, as a parent, we did just as Janet did, and asked God to show us where we have gone wrong in our own life and example, and how to make that right to our children. Even if the damage was done years ago, a few sincere words of love and apology could go a long ways towards mending broken bridges and helping someone turn and walk a new direction. Whatever the case, when problems arise, rather than reacting from our own feelings, anger or frustration, let’s learn to spend extra time in prayer and act based on God’s word, His love and His Spirit. 

Dear Heavenly Father, When things go wrong, it’s so easy to point the finger and be harsh and critical. And indeed there is a time to reprove. But please teach us how to love and act based on Your word, rather than reacting in anger. Teach us how to walk a higher road as parents and truly love as you love and forgive as you forgive, and try to do the best to make sure there is nothing between us and you, or us and our loved ones. It’s not easy, especially with family, but this is where we need your grace the most: In our home and in our hearts. Thank You for hearing and answering this prayer. In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

Promise to claim: Eph. 4:32

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  • Bethune Davis

    Thanks for sharing, Janet. I know what you mean, I have similar experiences with my daughter. The only difference is that I didn’t do what you did. I am thankful that the Holy Spirit has led me to confess to her and God of my failures and ask forgiveness,

  • Bethune Davis

    Thanks for sharing.

  • Annette Alleyne

    Thanks for sharing. How often we forget what it was like to be in the wrong and want the comfort and sympathy of others. I am glad that you have shared your experience and for the manner in which you handled the problem. Oftentimes we forget what it was like to make a mistake or have done wrong in the way we treat others. We want to bring on the full weight of the law to get justice. Sometimes this can be out of malice and vindictiveness. At other times it maybe because we are angry at the individual for showing us up because we too are guilty of the fault or sin. I think it would be good for all of us to take a moment and reflect on our pass before we condemn a brother or sister. It would be like looking in a mirror and seeing me as I truly am before God and thus informing me that I am no better without the help of God. That being the realization should help us to be more tolerant of others when they mess up. I remember this poem from years ago and share it with you.

    When some fellow yields to temptation and breaks some conventional law,
    We look for no good in his make-up
    But , oh how we look for the flaw.
    Nobody asks who did the tempting
    Or allows for the battle he has fought
    His name becomes food for the jackals
    The saints who has never been caught.

    The author of this poem ends with a prayer of acknowledgement. An acknowledgement of personal sins and ask God for deliverance from the saints who have never been caught.

    I am glad that our God is different. I am glad that He is a forgiving God who will bury my sins in the deepest part of the sea and will remember them no more. Given that, I am willing to be tolerant of the brothers and sisters who are weak. I am taking heed, less I fall for I surely will be in need of the hand of a tolerant brother or sister to lift me up. May God help us to truly become our brother’s keeper and travel this Christian pathway. May we find the time to stop and pray for those who are weak and in need of the strength to be conquerors in Jesus.

    • Gloria Mosha-Onchiri

      Amen.

    • Noeline Cutts

      If we can learn to love like Jesus does we won’t see the faults in others that annoy us,we will just love them.Jesus never rebuked Judas yet He knew he was a thief, & that he planned on selling Him to the Priests for 30 pieces of silver.Jesus spoke kindly to the Pharisee & showed him how worthy Mary was when she washed his feet with her tears. Thank you Lord Jesus for your Love,teach us how to love like you do.

      • Justina

        Help me Father, I want to love like You love and forgive like You forgive in Jesus Name amen.

    • Dike Emmanuel

      Teach us O’Lord to love like christ. Teach us to learn to be patient with one another. Teach us O’Lord to learn to remove the log ( specks) in our eyes before removing others cos we all have logs to remove. Refine us O’Lord my God and savior .

  • Martine Irumva

    Thank you! I needed this lesson.

  • Gloria Mosha-Onchiri

    Thanks Janet I have learnt something new today and I pray that I will apply it in my life.

  • Lydiah

    Thanks for sharing the encouraging scenario on how to correct our loved ones, especially children, with love under God guidance. Be blessed and may we all emulate this

  • Natasha

    May almighty God bless you Janet, for being so real. Often as SDA we aren’t.
    My Rock, my Shield, my Fortress, Love of my life, my Very present help in the time of trouble, Jesus, You know just how much I needed to hear this specific testimony presently. I had repented and apologized long before today as you directed and now I know, I was not alone, on this particular road. I have struggled with guilt for years, Only now, I can take comfort. As I continue on this journey of single parenting, with a pierced heart, I claim that I will have a testimony when my son grows up. Oh how I love You Abba! You always show up on time! Cover my son, my angel, through these teenage years, give us grace to be more. I will forever praise and adore You my soon coming King. Humbly and tearfully I pray amen,amen. Thank You sweet Jesus.

    • ellen

      Amen!

      • Moses N Mariana Laweloa

        Thanks for sharing,
        I ask God to help me to share this to my family and friends

    • Dike Emmanuel

      Sister Natasha,
      His Grace will be sufficient for you . Your son will bring honor to God and will be a blessing to you. I pray that the Lord will heal your pierced heart . Lord please heal my sister of her brokenness . Restore her to your glory and have your way in her life. Amen

      • Natasha

        AMEN my dear brother. May the blessings of the Lord that is rich rest heavily upon you. Thank you for your warm prayer.

  • Emmy

    Thanks for sharing.

  • April

    Many times I felt that they (my children) were making a mess of things, unfortunately they followed my example. This story is so reminiscent of my life. Many times God has shown me that it was my fault. I apologize and pray for my children when it is drawn to my attention and take responsibility for my past actions and encourage them with the words “you don’t have to make the same mistakes I did, ask Jesus”. Thank you for a real life story and I pray that God continues to reveal and to heal. Amen

  • Linda Simon

    Thank you💌

  • Carleen Chambers

    Sister April I have the same story as urs I did not grow up my kids in the fear of the Lord as my mother did to me, I started going back to church when they were in their late teens now they have noting to do with church, I tried several time to envite to church they always have excuse not to come, all I can do for them now is to put them before the thown of God each day, I agree that parent should train the kids then they are small that they will not depart from the words of God,and if they should left the church it will still be with them where ever they go in in their life, in my case they have noting to remember and it’s all my fault, but I know that I serve a living God that here and answer prayers.

  • Gemane G. Getteh

    Amen!

  • Erin

    Thanks for Sharing. I have the same story few days ago. But, Praise God, I realy be thank full, God help me, and tell me what am I supposed to do. He answer my prayer.
    Thanks for Your mercy God.

  • Julie Mann

    Waiting on the Lord can be so difficult as it tries our faith, but prayer always brings me around to the realization that His timing and His answers are always to be trusted and desired.

  • Dike Emmanuel

    I am deeply touched by this inspired write up by sister Janet. Learning is a daily process. I am challenged today and I pray the Lord to grant me all the grace I need to be the best father ever to my children. Thank you for sharing.