When Daddy Doesn't Believe

7 strategies for spiritually single parents

"Half my heart believes in Jesus, but the other half isn't sure he's real." Seven-year-old Becky hugged me. "What am I gonna do, Mom?"

Her honest words grieved my already aching heart. After four years as a youth pastor, my husband had traded ministry for business. He allowed me to worship God freely, but he eventually stopped going to church and started calling himself an agnostic. I knew Becky would notice our spiritual differences someday, but I still felt unprepared for her question.

God, however, wasn't surprised. As we sat on the bed and opened her Bible, Jeremiah 29:13 provided his answer: "You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart."

"How do we seek him, Mom?"

I read the previous verse, "Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you."

An idea I'd heard several months earlier came to mind. "Let's make construction paper flowers and write a prayer request on each one. We'll pray every day for the requests. When God answers one, we'll stick the flower on the wall until we have a whole garden of answered prayers. We'll be able to see God in how he answers us."

When my husband fails to be a spiritual team player, I picture myself yoked with God— who lends me his power and hope.

By the end of that first week, God answered five of Becky's simple requests, including healing her teacher's illness and allowing a friend to visit for a sleepover. At Becky's suggestion, we stuck the flowers to her bedroom ceiling where she could read them day and night. By the end of the month, 20 flowers graced her ceiling garden. One of them read, "Please help me to know you, God."

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