One of my daughters had a boyfriend when she was in her twenties – his name was Jimmy. He was a sweet, Christian young man, our family really liked him. They didn’t date for very long. She went off to college and he stayed in the local area. Jimmy loved to hang out with our family. He was fun, insightful, talented and just a great guy to be around. I always saw him as my spiritual son. It felt like he was part of our family. Our family knew that we could count on him to help us out in any situation. He watched our farm-house for us when we were on vacation, helped us with small projects and was fun to have around.
One month led to another and one year led to another. We always stayed in touch with Jimmy. We celebrated birthdays and holidays with him. We got to know his family and welcomed them into our home and heart as well. Jimmy was a good and faithful friend and we always thanked the Lord for his friendship. He helped us to find a new church when we felt spiritually dry. We often prayed together. We drove to church together and would have lunch afterwards. Jimmy was definitely an important part of our family and we loved him.
After a few years of trying to find the right career path Jimmy left for an extended stay in another country. He had plans to marry a Christian girl that he had met who was from South America. When he returned to the states things didn’t turn out as he planned and he broke off the engagement. For various reasons he began to distance himself from our family.
I truly missed Jimmy. I missed having him over for dinner. I missed praying with him. I missed him sharing his life’s journey with us. Things had changed and it seemed no matter what we did they would never be the same.
The year we stopped talking I had a small Christmas gift for him. I had called him to let him know we’d love to see him and that we had a gift for him. He was glad to hear from me and said he would stop by to pick it up. He never came by. I heard that he has since married and has a daughter.
For 4 years I have kept Jimmy’s Christmas gift in my attic.
I would lay hands on the gift and pray “Lord, bring Jimmy back home. Bring him to his senses. Let him know how much we love him.”
Several times I was asked by my family why I was keeping a wrapped Christmas gift in the attic. I would always explain that I was believing that God was going to bring Jimmy back into our lives. That gift was my step of faith. The gift was not to be opened by anyone except Jimmy. I was going to pray him back. I kept praying. I kept believing.
The other day I was conversing with one of my daughters about old boyfriends. I said I thought it was nice if we all stayed in touch even after they had broken up.
My daughter said “No, that’s not good. That person is no longer part of our family relationship. Why would you keep the guy believing in a fantasy that they are still connected to us? It gives them a false sense of hope.”
At the moment I disagreed. Yet, after a few days I realized my daughter was right. There is a proper time to have a relationship and there is a proper time to let go. It was then that I realized Jimmy was never coming back. He was no longer dating my daughter and he now had his own life. My eyes were opened to the truth. What I thought was God’s will was actually only my own.
When I had this realization I immediately broke the soul ties between Jimmy and our family. I released him to live his life. I blessed him. I released myself of the expectation of him ever being a part of our family. I felt such a tremendous joy, a great relief, a peace. He has his life to live, we have ours.
I am moving into my future. I no longer am holding onto a past relationship that will never be. This is very freeing. There is great joy in this. I can find happiness in the wonderful memories that we did share and the beautiful times we had together.
The gift in the attic? I will bring it to Goodwill. It will be a blessing to someone.
Is there someone in your life that you have been holding onto but you know will never come back? Is there a relationship in your life that is over but you keep dreaming and hoping it will be restored? Are you clinging to the past? Ask the Lord to show you if it’s time to move on. Let it go. Be at peace. God has a beautiful future for you.
“Dear Lord, I pray for my friend. Please show him/her if there is someone that they are clinging to that is not going to come back. Help them to let it go. Help them to release the person. We now break any soul ties that would keep the memories and emotions attaching them to this person. Let my friend know that you are now leading them into the future that you have for them – and it is good.” In Jesus name we pray.” amen