We’ve all heard of the term “Baptism by Fire” but, I wonder how many have ever considered its meaning. In the Christian biblical sense, it essentially means that it is a baptism by the spirit and the trial of one’s faith. This means that a believer’s faith is tested or tried through some sort of difficulty or a series of mental and physical trials.
However, this meaning has largely been replaced and the meaning most often used according to the definition used by the Oxford dictionary is, ‘a difficult introduction to a new job or activity’. One example of this is of a soldier’s first experience of battle. ‘Baptism’ because battle is new to him and ‘fire’ from the firing of guns that is, he is ‘under fire’.
When we look at both explanations, we can actually see similarities that can be equated to the tests of which we face through the struggles in the alienation of our children. This is when we are tested in our faith that we will be reunited with our children. The other aspect of this, is that alienation is new to us and how we respond to the many obstacles is critical.
Take for example, when a couple makes the decision to separate their lives from one another and children are involved, many times it is never considered that our former partner would choose to hurt us through deprivation of our own child. Instead, we believe that while anger and hostilities may exist between us nothing is more important than that of our children’s best interest.
Unfortunately, this is not always the case in many separations or divorces. One parent may decide that they are unable to handle the breakdown of their relationship and may feel that they must do whatever is necessary to harm their former partner. This can involve aspects of belittling their ex, battling for unequal split of familial assets or even allegations of false abuse.
Perhaps, they may even decide that the most effective and damaging way to cause the greatest harm is through the alienation of their child. In doing so, they fully understand that great pain and emotional collapse will render the target parent into a state of utter disrepair. Where the very act of stripping us from our child will be forever life changing.
Should this occur, we find ourselves walking in territory that we have never known before or even felt was conceivable. The very notion of being erased from our child’s life and perhaps, their memory by the one person of whom we once trusted most, is now our betrayer. They are the one who will do everything in their power to destroy us from the inside out.
Here is where we are put to the test. The first, shall be in our faith that no man, no woman, no fair and just system will ever allow a loving parent to be separated from their child. It is also a test in our emotional resolve to do all that is necessary to combat against the force of alienation from our child. Finally, it will test the boundaries of our love of our children and our desire to be in their lives.
Then comes the test of our abilities by fire. This is when, much like a soldier who is tested on the battlefield and learns how they will respond. Will we become the same person who is a threat to the bonds we have with our child or will we choose to be an example for our children. Maybe, we’ll persevere through honesty and integrity. Either way, our test is how we choose to fight this conflict.
Dependent on how we conduct our actions, we will define who we are in the eyes of others and most importantly, the view our children will eventually have of us. Then again, how will we view ourselves as a result of our actions? It is never guaranteed that we will be victorious in the beginning stages but, it is the end results that are of ultimate concern, no matter how short or how long our test will last.
This shall be our alienation by Fire!
By David Shubert
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Source: (169) Children’s Rights
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