Your Words on Paper
Use letters to bring healing like one father did
Pain and heartache can come from estranged relationships. It takes commitment and effort to rebuild trust and reconcile with loved ones. No matter what caused the chasm between you and your friend, spouse, child or other family members, faith and determination open the door to the possibility or restoration to even the most broken of relationships.
Earlier this year, during the morning show, Kankelfritz and Friends were talking about estranged relationships and asked the question, “How have you been able to repair a relationship or be a part of people coming back together?”
Lynn called and shared his personal experience of repairing estranged relationships with his children on-air.
“I was divorced in 2005. While my kids were living in another person’s house, I started writing letters to my children every Christmas, birthday and special occasions. You can say things in a letter that you don’t normally say face-to-face, or don’t have time to. Your emotions kind of get crazy because guys typically don’t communicate all that well. But boy, my children love their Christmas letters. They love their birthday letters.
And I’ve encouraged other men to write your children. It usually takes two or three days to get that letter out but write it because now my kids have 18 years’ worth of letters, since 2005. They know that their father loves them, and what I see in them.
And I think sometimes communicating is hard face to face. So, sit down and write a letter. And let them know how much you love them and what they mean to you. Writing letters is a lost art, but it’s very powerful.
My children clamor to open their letters on Christmas Eve, ‘Dad, can we open the letter? Can we open the letter?’”
As Lynn shared, writing letters to his children allowed him to express his love and share his feelings in an extraordinary way. This powerful act of love helped him maintain a strong connection with his children.
Forgiveness and Humility
Healing relationships is not only about communication, but it’s also about forgiveness and humility. Forgiveness is essential for bringing you back together with those you care about. In Colossians 3:13 it says, “Be gentle and ready to forgive; never hold grudges. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others” (TLB).
Although forgiveness is not aways easy, it is vitally important for maintaining and repairing relationships. It takes humility to admit when you are wrong and to ask for forgiveness from someone you have hurt.
Prayer and Patience
James 5:16 says, “Admit your faults to one another and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The earnest prayer of a righteous man has great power and wonderful results” (TLB). Praying for the person you have a broken relationship with is love and humility in action. Your prayer is an admission that you need God’s intervention to help bring healing and hope for a better relationship.
“Let’s not become discouraged in doing good, for in due time we will reap, if we do not become weary” (Galatians 6:9 NASB). Patience and persistence are keys to unlocking the hearts of others in our efforts to reconcile.
Healing takes time, but it’s a journey that is worth the wait.
If you’ll lean into God’s plan and timing, you’ll find it easier to let go of your own expectations and hopes for the relationship, and trust God to work all things together for your good. Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He will make your paths straight” (NASB).
Your ultimate goal of reconciliation is to glorify God. In 1 Corinthians 10:31 it says, “When you eat or drink or do anything else, always do it to honor God” (CEV).