Today I’m continuing my series on fear with a story about Vivienne.
I have a “problem.”
My “problem” is a certain four-year old who constantly needs her mommy.
Now, to be honest, this isn’t really a problem. Or let’s just say it’s a good “problem” to have.
Her neediness can definitely be an issue, though, when I’m trying to sneak out of her room at night after hearing a hundred stories and answering a thousand questions. Sometimes mama just wants to sit down and relax. Are you with me?
Vivienne’s panic, her fear of abandonment, is unfamiliar to me. It baffles me. Neither of my other children experienced these extreme emotions.
Vivienne has always been attached to my hip. Even as a newborn, she wanted no one except me. I couldn’t leave her in the church nursery, friends couldn’t hold her, even my own parents weren’t able to console her.
Babysitters were out of the question.
She only wanted her mommy.
And now, as a bold and sassy four-year old, more often than not she still says these words to me:
“But Mommy. I just want you.”
It pulls at my heartstrings even as I feel frustration well up inside me.
“Mommy, I just want you.”
“But I want you.”
Vivienne seems to be afraid that I am going to leave her. That I won’t be around when she wakes up. That I won’t come home from a trip to the grocery store.
I’m not sure where this fear of abandonment comes from. Or if it’s truly a fear of abandonment at all.
Frankly, I’m not sure what it is or what to do about it.
Do you ever fear being abandoned? Maybe you have experienced someone leaving you which leads to your feeling that God might leave you too.
I don’t have experience with abandonment. Thankfully. But I have other fears.
Fears that I am not worthy.
Fears that no one will accept me for who I am.
Fears that something might happen to me, my husband, or my children.
Fears that God would allow something bad to happen in our lives.
I guess those could qualify as a fear of abandonment.
Do you often feel insignificant and unloved by the God of the universe? Do you long for Him the way a child longs for her parent? What are your fears?
Are you afraid He won’t love you? That He can’t love you because of something you’ve done?
Do you believe that if He truly knew everything you’ve done or thought, He might leave you?
Friend, you are mistaken. Just as Vivienne is wrong in thinking I will leave her, we are wrong when we believe that God can’t love us. Our true selves.
There is nothing we can do to make Him love us any more than He already does.
That’s hard to fathom, isn’t it?
I love my children, but there are times when I don’t really like them very much. (Please tell me I’m not alone in feeling this way.)
But God never feels that way about us. He adores us. He fights for us. He draws us closer to Himself.
1 John 4:18-19 says this:
“There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear… We love because he first loved us.”
And 1 John 3:16 reminds us how we can know what love is: “Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.”
Friends, the Lord will never abandon you. He won’t leave you when the road gets too hard or too long. When you feel as if you can’t go any further.
Just as I try and reassure sweet Vivienne that I am close, that I won’t leave her, we can be assured that the Lord is always near to us.
When your fears get the best of you, remember that Christ loves you so much that He gave up his life so you can be with Him. You don’t have to be afraid of losing that love. Reach out to Him with your fears and questions. Your concerns and distress.
He will always be right beside you.