Looking to Him–From Jaden’s Perspective

When we moved to Wisconsin my kids really struggled with the transition. Leaving the stability of life in Florida was a real challenge. Everything they dreaded was every bit as hard as they had feared. And honestly it was harder. For three months of our life in Wisconsin the boys could not see Joel at all. We had no home of our own for two of those months. As a mom I dealt with all the grief and difficulties of these new trials with a deep concern for how they were affecting my kids. But I knew that the truth was I could barely mitigate the damages; there was really no hope of rescuing them from the situation. Even though I felt like my own sorrow was tertiary to theirs and Joel’s in many ways relieving their situation was totally out of my control.

Almost four years have passed since then. Last month Jaden wrote this short testimony to share with his friends, about his own reliance on God as he has stepped out of the shadows of shame:

“As many of you know I lived in Florida for ages 6-11 before moving to Wisconsin, and I have more than 90% of my extended family in Florida. I have had people ask “Why on earth would you move from Florida to Wisconsin?” and I would always answer “My Dad had a job transfer or something along those lines. But the truth is their was no job transfer; the truth is my Dad was in prison for 3 years in Georgia and we would visit twice a month; during this time of sorrow and mourning, we all knew God would make good of this tragedy.

My Grandpa on my Mom’s side was like a father to me for those 3 years and we still have a wonderful relationship. I was kind of depressed during this time and tried not to cry around anyone or show anyone I was depressed. I tried to hide it.

When my Dad got out of prison he was going be sent to Wisconsin and to be with him we would have to move. All we knew in Florida to nothing we knew in Wisconsin! This was a scary moment for all of us. My dad was placed in a halfway house  and was told we would be able to see him soon. Which we were able to. We rented a house for a few months then bought a place in a nice neighborhood ( the one I’m currently living in).

However, this experience, I feel like in a way changed my life for good actually. I feel like feeling that depression I did when I was younger actually helped me with being a faithful Christian relying on God. Since then I have not been depressed and love my life on Wisconsin; I have many friends who I love dearly. However if I had a choice to be in Florida I would choose to move, because although I have many friends here and have lost touch with some friends in Florida, my extended family (mainly my Pappy and my cousins) mean the world to me.”



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