Jesus

Why I Will Pray for the Troubled Kid

Why I Will Pray for the Troubled Kid 259 194 Paula

As I am sitting here reading the updates about the Florida shooting I am getting sick to my stomach. I tossed and turned through out the night thinking about this school shooting. My heart hurts for all the families and I feel completely broken, but I can’t get the image out of my head of the shooter in handcuffs with all the police standing around him. 

I knew in my heart that this kid had a troubled life. I am not saying I am going to try to sit here and justify what he has done, but I am going to express my feelings on what I have learned about the shooter so far and why I will continue to pray for this teenage boy and the families who have lost loved ones.

As humans we are so quick to label others before we can actually learn who a person really is and where they come from. The media has called this kid a “troubled teen” and classmates who knew him have said, “We knew he was the ‘type of kid’ who would do this someday.” As I saw these labels I got even more emotional and I needed to ask myself why.

You see when I started to learn about this kids history I could relate to it in so many ways. One he was adopted as a child. The media has shared he lost his mother a year ago, which that would be his adopted mom, not his biological mom. It’s states he lost his dad a decade ago. Is that his real dad or adopted dad? You see we don’t have all the details of his history. But it pretty much sounds like he was an orphan from the day he was born, and the feelings that come attached to that are, I am unwanted, I am unlovable, and nobody wants me. What do I have to live for?

These are the voices that control most troubled kids, but it usually starts from somewhere. It’s the wounds that become so deep in our hearts and control our thoughts and behaviors. It’s the negative thoughts that plague us and get louder and louder until we take action.

I saw in the media that he was a quiet kid, but once he started talking he enjoyed being heard. That is sometimes all these kids want is to be heard. Does anyone care about me? Yes, he did things like pulling fire alarms, starting fights with other kids and posting things on social media. All this stuff he was doing is attention-seeking behaviors. He is trying get attention he never had and most likely acting out some of the emotions that are trapped inside of him that he doesn’t know how to express.

I can go on and on about this shooting, but I will stop right here and save my energy to continue to pray for all the families involved. But as I saw this child get arrested and the words that were used to describe him, I thought to myself that could have been me. I grew up in alcoholism, drug addiction, and abuse until my dad went to prison. My mom was an addict and she didn’t come home for long periods of time. This left me scared, lonely, confused, feeling unwanted, unlovable. I got into trouble all the time at school. I was kicked out almost every week for fighting or put in a separate room, isolated from my classmates, and this just fed the feelings even stronger, there must be something wrong with me… Then I was sent to a school for at risk kids, just like the Florida shooter was. I had so much anger and confusion bottled up inside of me that I understand where this kid is coming from. I will continue to share my story to help others understand trauma and addiction. And I will continue to pray for ‘this so called troubled teen’ who is broken and powerless over the life he has been given so far.

My heart is broken for the troubled children who are drowning in their pain and trauma.

I’m not saying you have to agree with what I am saying, but I would like you to understand the mind of a troubled child.

With Love,

 

Paula Jauch

 

 

 

Trust God with your Mess

Trust God with your Mess 5665 4506 Paula

When I was 15 years old and pregnant I found myself in what felt like a mess, and at the time I could see no way out of it, let alone see the BIGGER picture. But 26 years later here is my photo in the Grand Rapids GR magazine as I speak to a group of teenage girls who are pregnant and scared just like I was at their age.

You see, when we are going through something hard or something scary, it’s hard to see pass the mess. What I’ve learned in my personal experience is no matter what the situation may be that you find yourself in, just to continue to trust God and know that he has a bigger plan. I have witnessed it over and over how faithful he is to take our messes and our brokenness and turn into a beautiful story of redemption. But at the time it’s so hard to believe He will turn our situation around for good. I had a friend once tell me, ” it may feel like you are crawling through a black tunnel, but I promise you if you don’t stop, there will be light at the end.” Man, was she right! I can now see that God was moving even in the dark places that I felt would never end.

Today I get to be a part of something bigger than myself and that is offering hope to teen moms. I am part of a non-profit called the Lighthouse for Teen Moms here in West Michigan. And I am in awe of what God can do through other people’s brokenness. Now I get to witness him working through this non-profit helping pregnant teenage girls just like me. The Lighthouse for Teen Moms primary goal is to get homeless pregnant teen moms off the streets. The Lighthouse provides poor, distressed, or underprivileged young mothers with housing, counseling, and access to spiritual instruction; to mentor them using a Biblical model Goal. If you know of a young girl who can use help, please be sure to reach out. Also, to learn more or be part of what this ministry is doing you can go here for more information.

thelighthouseforteenmoms.org

 #teenmom #teenpregnancy #teengirls #teenagepregnancy #pregnant #pregnancy

Christmas-Family Boundaries and Addiction

Christmas-Family Boundaries and Addiction 480 640 Paula

I’ve been wanting to write this blog for the last few weeks about the Christmas season. I want to talk to you about addiction in the family, and how we can put boundaries in place. I will be sharing with you what is on my heart. So if you are looking for new family traditions or a good Christmas sugar cookie recipe this blog may not be for you. I want to encourage whoever is reading this and let them know they can overcome the pain of the holidays. I am hopeful that what I share will help many, because I know I am not alone when it comes to the pain this season may bring. 

You see during the Christmas or holiday season it brings up A LOT of pain for so many people. This is why the suicide rate goes up and many people find themselves running back to their addiction.

During this time of year we are left with so much pain. We are left to sort through the confusion of our past. So many thoughts at this time of year may be running through our heads. We are not sure if we should go around that family member who continues to hurt us. We are confused whether or not we should go to the Christmas party because the person who sexually abused us as a child might be there. Maybe this is the time of year when your spouse walked out on you. Or maybe you are someone who grew up in abuse and addiction and you are left with nothing but brokenness from your childhood. The list can go on and on and on of why you may be feeling pain.  Please take whatever your current situation maybe and apply it to what I am about to share.

I felt a strong urge to write on these topics of boundaries, self-care and how to handle our pain during the holiday season.  While so many people this time of the year are enjoying Christmas parties, time with family, holiday shopping or decorating a Christmas tree, this may not be the case for your family. The Christmas season can actually be hard for so many people, bringing up a lot of painful memories.

I know this was and still is my situation… As I write this blog I am reminded of how painful my childhood was, and I am also reminded of how ‘ADDICTION’ has taken so much from my life. I feel my parent’s passed away way too young and left a lot of dysfunction behind them. Daily I find myself trying to sort through my life experience so I can continue to live a life of victory. I would like to share with you some things I have learned through my experience.

I used to think that I had to go to every family party, but after many years of doing this I noticed a pattern. I was trying to get FREE from my self-destructive behaviors but every time I left a family function I had the urge to go back to my eating disorder and self-destructive habits. I continued to pray and ask God to show me why. Finally, when I was ready to listen He showed me, you can’t get free from something that you have witnessed since you were a child. Addiction and pain was all I knew, but yet I wanted be free from all of it. Every time I went to a ‘family party’ I was exposed to the conversations of who was still using, or who has died or who was in jail. This kind of talk triggered all my childhood wounds that made me want to run back to my eating disorder and self-harm.

Does this make sense?

Unfortunately,  in order for me to heal and get free, I had to put boundaries in place. BUT guess what happened next? I was accused of not being normal like the rest of the family, not being loving, and then last but not least, they even said, I wasn’t a true Christian. Does any of this sound familiar? Now let me share with you, this type of trauma is not easy to overcome. You have to have a lot of support from Godly people with a lot wisdom and understanding that can speak into your life when you are going through this type of healing.

But if we don’t deal with this ‘YUCKY’ stuff around the Christmas/Holiday season you will find yourself in a vicious cycle of not feeling your feelings, running back to old destructive patterns like addiction, and self-hate. We have to learn to put up healthy boundaries and learn self-care. Because if we don’t take care of ourselves nobody will.

Now ask yourself the question, will I pay a price if I go to this party or event? Do I feel strong enough? When you go around these people are they lifting you up or like my husband likes to say, ” are they dumping poison into your life?”

Remember the only way to get over your pain is to FEEL it. I like to say your pain won’t kill you, but your addiction will. So be sure to put up boundaries and FYI: this includes FAMILY, mother, brother, sister, uncles, and ALL!

Be gentle with yourself and take care of you! Surround yourself with people who love you and will speak truth into the area you are trying to overcome. Do what feels right for YOU.

I’ve decided to surround myself with people who will help me become who I want to be, not what I grew up in.

I want to encourage you today to do whatever it takes to heal and get free. And I promise you, you will start to enjoy the Christmas and Holiday season!

 

With Love,

Paula Jauch

 

 

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