Last Tuesday our home was broken into…yet I was given so much more than they stole.

The night before “the event” I was at my Momheart meeting. My heart was heavy that night. Tears & frustrations poured out to my mentor in her kitchen. “Why was it so hard to parent my 4-year-old right now? I’ve been trying everything and he is so challenging”. She gave me comfort and wisdom.

We discussed the last chapter of Ann Voskamp’s “One Thousand Gifts”. Focusing on God being a gift-giver, who desires to love us intimately. But I was just not in the mood. I realized I viewed God as needing me to earn His love. Love freely given? Undeserved? How could that be? Especially imagining Him loving me in this depressed, anti-social, funk.

On Tuesday, while all the boys were at school I came home to eat lunch after running some errands. After eating my lunch, I wrote a quick post for the blog, then made peanut butter cookies with Hershey kisses on them for an after-school treat for the boys. 

Realizing I was going to be late for carpool pickup I left my new Macbook laptop on the kitchen counter. I turned on the alarm. Locked the door and headed for the boys’ school.

30 minutes later someone broke into our home.

They took the laptop on the counter. Went upstairs and opened the drawer of my bedside table, pulled out a bin of maternity clothes from under my bed, went through the drawers in my area of the bathroom, stole my costume jewelry and a jewelry box, went through our closet. Stole a pillowcase to carry out all the loot.

I’ve had a week to process what happened. I have had countless conversations with friends and family. I’ve received wonderful words of comfort & encouragement. I have also been asked multiple times, “Do you feel violated? Are you scared?”

It’s caused me to stop and think, why don’t I feel fear? Why don’t I feel violated?

I replay my comments to others about “the event”:

  • I am so grateful we were not home.
  • I am grateful it wasn’t a day where we would normally be home for naps at that exact time, with my 6-year-old often downstairs playing by that backdoor that was broken into.
  • I am so grateful they didn’t take any of my husband or particularly the boys’ things.
  • I am grateful that my camera, only 2 ft away from my laptop on the same kitchen counter, was not stolen.
  • I am grateful that all the pictures on the stolen laptop are still on my camera…since I haven’t taken the time to delete them yet.
  • I am grateful that the laptop they stole had Scripture as the screen saver and folders labeled “God Centered Mom” & “Do Not Depart”.
  • I am extremely grateful that my wedding rings (that I’m not currently wearing in my extreme pregnant state) were just moved and hidden 2 days prior to the break-in (hiding them from the toddler & preschooler) and therefore were not stolen!!
  • I am grateful that my current favorite pieces of costume jewelry were not taken.
  • I am grateful for a working alarm & responsive police.
  • I am so grateful for a husband who came home from work immediately to clean everything up and fix the door.

There it is…without realizing it I had created a gratitude list. With each conversation I had been counting my gifts.

This is why fear had no place. It had been pushed out by gratitude.

Ann Voskamp wrote in her book, “We can only experience one emotion at a time.”

Not only had the theft given me a heart of gratitude that pushed out fear…that gratitude had pushed out the parenting frustrations I had been feeling. I saw my life with new eyes. It also pushed aside the depression that had been hovering, as I was reminded of the importance of friendships & how blessed I am.

This past week I realized they may have broken in our home & taken some of my things, but God’s power is greater. Nothing can separate us from His love.

“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose…

What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?…

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword?…

For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”  

Romans 8:28, 31, 35, 38-39

Linking up with:

A Holy Experience: Multitude on Mondays