#PreApproved Writer of the Week: Kelly Greer

June 17, 2014 | 20 comments

#PreApproved Sisterhood Series

LoveIdolPrintable_pink

Welcome to a new series, hosted here on the blog. Every Tuesday night, one of our PreApproved sisters will share her story on letting go of a love idol.

Together, we’re giving up our love idols, and we’re not taking them back.

We are already approved; we have nothing to prove. In Christ, we are #preapproved.

The Bleachers
Kelly Greer

Kelly Greer1

I’m reading Jennifer Dukes Lee’s book Love Idol, which I love by the way.  I’m on chapter 11.  And the first sentence reads like this,

“How many people will be in the bleachers?”

And I remember back ten years ago or so to our own bleacher story.  Our youngest daughter was just starting high school the fall after I had brain surgery to remove a brain tumor.  She was excited.  After all, she tried out and made the high school drill team.  She would be cheering on the teams – the football teams and basketball teams.  There would be wheelchair fundraisers, dance competitions, the homecoming parade and all the hoopla of being a freshman with pom poms.  There were practices and afterschool activities, and dinners with the squad.  It was the time of her life.

And that year when she looked up for my approval, she couldn’t find me anywhere—nowhere in the bleachers or even on the sidelines.

I had to sit out the game that year.  Instead, most of my days and nights were spent in my room where I was isolated from noise, light and people.  My brain was so hypersensitive that I couldn’t even tolerate the sound of another human being breathing or feel the breeze as they walked by.   Imagine a stadium full of people and all of the noise and commotion they would cause.   Honestly I wasn’t just missing from the bleachers that year; I was missing from most of Jenny’s daily life.  I wasn’t even aware of her needs much of the time because I simply didn’t think about them.  I couldn’t.  My mind was overwhelmed just trying to navigate daily survival.

I had always been the sort of mom who was there for you.  I wouldn’t miss a game for anything with the older kids.   Even when they were playing on opposite ends of town, I would somehow manage to sit in the bleachers at least for a portion of the game and race across town to sit for the other one.  Now all we had at home was Jenny, one place to go, one stadium at a time, one seat on the bleachers.

And that is exactly where my idol showed up–in the bleachers.   The idol of being needed, valued, necessary, important, vital to the well being of my children.  The idol of being the mom who was always there–in the classroom, at the concert, in the driver’s seat, on the sidelines, and especially in the bleachers.

God knew a strong-willed, hands-on, take-charge, mother like me was not going to easily recognize this sneaky idol and simply let it go.   So he allowed me to lie on my back for a season in absolute helplessness so I could begin to see in my powerlessness just how valuable I was simply because He loves me.  I didn’t even know that motherhood could be an idol until I could no longer measure my worth by my mothering.

We made it through that season of life okay. Even as I lamented my inability to be there for Jenny, God whispered to my heart that it was not what I did for Jenny’s earthly life that mattered, rather it was her eternal life that mattered most.  So I prayed a lot for her, and for me, alone in my room, day in and day out.   And I let God do the mothering for the both of us.  This would be the beginning of my laying down one of my love idols, right there in the middle of the stadium, on those bleachers.

My name is Kelly and I am preapproved.

Kelly is a mom to five, grandmother to eleven darlings.  When she isn’t on her knees in prayer, you can find her playing with her grandchildren, pestering her husband, snorkeling down the river or writing about her story for his glory over at Kelly Writes.

THE LOVE IDOL MOVEMENT

Click here to find out more about the Love Idol movement.

Click here to purchase the book that inspired the movement.

Click here to join us on Facebook as we lay down our Love Idols and declare our #preapproved status in Christ.

THE PRINTABLES

LoveIdolPrintable_pink

Click here to print the black and white preapproved cutouts.
Place these where ever your Love Idols have lurked!

A pink PreApproved printable: to frame, to put on your refrigerator, to give to a friend.
Click here to print. My gift to you, brave soul!

by | June 17, 2014 | 20 comments

20 Comments

  1. Kel Rohlf

    Kelly-what an amazing confession and it’s so true…motherhood can be an idol…love hearing this testimony and your courage to be so honest …you encourage me!

    Reply
    • Kelly Greer

      Thank you Kel. We couldn’t have made it through those years without the prayers and encouragement offered us by you and all the beautiful faithful friends who stood by me through thick and thin, even now, and showed me how much Jesus loves me. Love you!

      Reply
  2. dukeslee

    So happy to have you here, friend. It’s been a joy having you on the Love Idol journey. Thank you for sharing so beautifully with our community. xo

    Reply
    • Kelly Greer

      Jennifer – I was going to comment right away when our story went up – but – I forgot! The story of my life. But the intent is the same. You have been such an encourager to me Jennifer as I heard you first speak a year ago April and then reading your book Love Idol. God did a work in my heart and gave me courage to be me and let him do with me what he can. Just knowing that I am enough in Him is enough encouragement to keep getting up every time I fall, hold my head up high, and follow him wherever he leads me. You friend, changed me life with your message from Jesus. XO

      Reply
  3. Elizabeth Stewart

    This spoke deep to me. I do believe you may have revealed a love idol that I have never acknowledged I have. I had no idea that you had gone through this type of physical trial, Kelly.
    Your story has me amazed.

    Reply
    • Kelly Greer

      Elizabeth, So thankful that God revealed an idol to you through my simple story. Yes, it has been quite a journey being me. God amazes me every day with his unconditional love. His mercies are new every morning. Thank you friend.

      Reply
  4. Jody Ohlsen Collins

    Wow, I’ll echo Elizabeth below–brain tumor? wow> I had no idea. How interesting (but not) that your ‘idol’ showed up in over parenting. I think we ALL succumb to that–regardless of their ages….as if we’re responsible for protecting them or being their everything. It’s a balance of trust.
    So glad you’re with us still to share your story, Kelly!

    Reply
    • Kelly Greer

      Thanks Jodi..yes ..learning to trust instead of control. Humbling journey this motherhood thing.

      Reply
  5. Pat Baer

    Kelly, thank you so much for sharing this honest and tender story. And thank you Jennifer for showcasing those who are willing to take a sledge hammer to their idols for the benefit of us all. You’re both champions. Appreciate you.

    Reply
    • Kelly Greer

      We are loved by the true champion of us all Pat!

      Reply
  6. Lynn D. Morrissey

    kelly, this is so beautifully, poignantly written, and I can’t imagine what a painful time this was for you. I know down-deep that Jenny surely understood, but it had to be so hard for you both. It is amazing how when you laid down the idol of “representational” motherhood–having to be there to prove your love–God allowed you to show her the greatest love of all…..by lifting her up to the Father and letting her love you…..just because….just because you are her mom. I can think of no greater love that you could ever give than to pray for your children. Yes, that will make a difference eternally, and there is no price tag you can place on it. How many parents never pray for their children? I shudder to think. You were lifting her up to the Father (and I know you still do), where a great crowd of witnesses are cheering her on from heavenly bleachers. No, Kelly, I’m convinced there is no better gift. I love you! (And think how God has answered your prayers for Matt, too)!
    Love
    Lynni
    So glad Jennifer had such a gifted, gracious, and authentic writer like you share!!!! We’re all so blessed by both you and her!

    Reply
    • Kelly Greer

      Lynni – God has been faithful to answer my prayers. He loves us so!

      Reply
  7. rhondaquaney

    “The idol of being needed, valued, necessary, important, vital to the well being of my children. ” Deep truth Kelly . It was a short trip from desiring to be a good mom, to finding my identity in my children and doing things for my glory, not for God’s glory. Thank you for letting us catch a glimpse of your cancer journey too. So glad to call you friend.

    Reply
    • Kelly Greer

      Rhonda, friend, you said that so well, “it was a short trip from desiring to be a good mom, to finding my identity in my children and doing things for my glory, not for God’s glory.” Love you.

      Reply
  8. Caryn Jenkins Christensen

    Oh girl! THIS…”I didn’t even know that motherhood could be an idol until I could no longer measure my worth by my mothering.” I too measured my worth by what I did for my daughters for years.
    Surgery was a HARD and painful way to show you where your own identity was tied up, but ever true to His Word, God took what the enemy intended for evil and made it for good. You are such an amazing woman of God and I count myself as blessed to know you Kelly <3

    Reply
    • Kelly Greer

      Caryn, I am blessed to know you and to walk with you on this journey of parenting as we pray together in our (In)courage group for our kids, and especially as we are being parented by the One Father in whom our true identity rests. Love you Caryn.

      Reply
  9. Ashley Tolins Larkin

    Thank you so much for this, dear Kelly. I think so many of us mamas can relate to this idol, though not through the journey you’ve described. Friend, I am so amazed when I think of how much you’ve endured, how much healing you’ve walked. I love you.

    Reply
    • Kelly Greer

      Ashley – Love you too. You are such a loving encouragement to me. And a sweet momma to your girls. Love you too.

      Reply
  10. Alyssa Santos

    Ah, I can relate (multiple injuries, not a brain tumor; but I too had kids who still needed me) – I am struck by how the Spirit of God met you and instructed you to seek him even in the confines of your room and recovery season. He is always enough and we are most aware of it when we are at our lowest, our least, our most lost.

    Reply
    • Kelly Greer

      Alyssa – so true. He is more than enough always, yet it is in our time of greatest need, and as you said, “at our lowest, our least, our most lost,” that we see him clearest. I am thankful for the years I have had to lean on him, our fellowship so sweet.

      Reply

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