I’m a nice lady, but I can be a fiercely protective wife, mama, and friend.
This has gotten me into trouble. Once it necessitated my 16-year-old sitting me down to tell me that as much as he appreciated my being in his corner, I simply couldn’t ask things of people beyond their capabilities, and that I needed to leave them to God to continue to grow and perfect. I told him to shut up. Well, not exactly like that, but I did sulk for a bit at having been spiritually schooled by my teenager. Truth is, deep down I was fiercely proud of him. He has grown up to be protective of those he loves, too, all under God’s big plan, and he’s probably better at it than I. But maybe I’ll do in a pinch.
It pierced my heart to watch another son’s brave but tender heart be shattered by a girl. My protectiveness took the form of speaking truth a lot of people didn’t want told. In the end I zipped it up and sealed it shut because I was asked not to share it. It wasn’t fair that my son bore the brunt of something that wasn’t his fault, but God laid His calming hand over my heart and reminded me that this was ultimately for our son’s good. I now see what He meant. I was trying to protect him, but God was protecting him for something–someone–who would love and value him the way he deserves. I will always be grateful for that.
I was reminded a few days ago how quickly I can come to my husband’s defense when someone called his character into question. I had to walk away and pray me some Jesus intervention so I didn’t put the holy smack-down on some folk. Don’t be talking mess about my man.
I am wildly protective of the right to life for the pre-born, and the right to continued quality life for the elderly. I am unswervingly protective of all who have special challenges in life. They are among my favorite people on the planet. Since childhood I have been a champion for the underdog.
Some of the worst beatings I’ve ever suffered came as a result of me standing up for someone else. In 4th grade I stood up for my little friend Robin, and was nearly killed by the neighborhood bully for my troubles. That same year I stood up for another friend against a school bully and was promptly stuffed underneath the merry-go-round. I challenged another bully in 7th grade. I had a tendency to forget I was so small.
One thing I will always protect (because love always protects) is my family, and by extension the institution of family. It is my heart to preserve God’s plan for marriage, parenting, and family, so it is an area of ministry where “I feel God’s pleasure”.
I pray daily for the wisdom to protect well. Are you a protector, too?
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Lisa Easterling is a lifelong resident of the Tampa Bay area alongside her husband Steve, five children, and two grandchildren. A pioneer for home education in Florida, she has served in various areas of Christian women’s, marriage, and family ministry for most of her life. Lisa is a lifelong writer and editor, and has taught life story, poetry, and other creative writing skills in classrooms and workshops for over 25 years. Her writings have appeared in such publications as Homeschool Alliance magazine, Heartbeat the Magazine, The Family Corner, and Home EdVenture. Lisa currently serves as Ministry Director and weekly columnist for Write Where It Hurts, where she enjoys inspiring and equipping women to write through their pain to healing and hope.