My parents and Step Mom modeled love and forgiveness. Let me explain.
My Mom left my Dad when I was 9. He was depressed for three years and my Mom didn’t know how to deal with this situation; so she left. This only made things worse for my Dad. My parent’s marriage had taken place just a few months before my birth – in short, my mom had become pregnant due to a relationship with a man she later found out was married. She immediately broke it off with him when she found out he was married. At some point, while pregnant with me, my Mom and Dad started dating and were married before I was born. When my Mom left my Dad, she proceeded to date my biological father, who was still married. Not good, I know. I believe this may have started before she left my Dad, I don’t know the exact timing as I was quite young. At some point my Dad found out about her rekindled relationship with my biological father.
I was raised by my Dad, Mike Hurley, from birth to age 9 when my Mom left but at this point I guess my Dad decided he did not want to pay for child support, so he didn’t. This went on until I was 18.
When I was 12, my Dad met and later married his girlfriend who became my Step Mom, and they moved to Las Vegas from L.A. just a few years after the split with my Mom. Subsequently they moved to Kentucky in 1991 and we lost all contact with them for over three years.
This upset me greatly, and when I was upset usually my Mom was as well.
As you can see, my family life as a kid was complicated.
Fast forward from 1994 to 2005, when my Dad and Step Mom were now living in Washington and were planning to move back to L.A. to care for my Step Mom’s ailing parents. Unbeknownst to me, my Mom had been talking to my Dad and Step Mom for some time and had invited them to stay with her while they tried to sort out their move to L.A. I want to note here that these three never went to church and at this time did not have a relationship with Jesus as their Lord and Savior. Yet, in spite of all of the above craziness from my childhood, they modeled the love and forgiveness Jesus spoke of in the Gospels and modeled Himself throughout His life, especially on the cross.
“And Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” And they cast lots to divide his garments” (Luke 23:34).
My Mom and my Dad are no longer with us, but my Step Mom still cannot talk about my Mom without tearing up. Of all of the main attributes of Jesus, love and forgiveness come the easiest to me just for the mere fact that it was modeled so beautifully to me by my Mom, Dad and Step Mom.
What story of love and forgiveness would you like to share?