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Letting God Change Us

A mother gets deeper insights into her son after he returns from war.

A military mom appreciates the changes in her son after his deployment.

We’ve all heard stories of military veterans who return home from war horribly changed. That fear lingered in the back of my mind years ago as I said goodbye to my son the night he left for his first deployment in the Middle East. I wanted him to come home to me safe and whole—inside and out—but I couldn’t find any guarantees.

I fought this insidious fear during my son’s time away. I confided in God, praying and asking Him to give me a guarantee, but nothing came. The months of my son’s deployment came and went, and finally our son returned home. I held him in my arms and wept because I could see the changes reflected in his eyes. He’d seen war and was different because of the experience.

He did his best to act like nothing had changed, but it was a lie and everyone who loved him knew it. I poured out my worry to God, asking Him to restore my son to me in the pre-war condition. All I heard from God was a single phrase whispered in my soul—Peace, be still.


I didn’t even know what that meant. Was God working at restoration? Was something going to suddenly change? I begged for clarification, but only heard, Peace, be still.

When I’d tried everything else, I did as that small voice said and was still. I sat back and watched my son. Here’s what I saw:

  • Where once our son had been a carefree teenager, he was now a man who’d learned the true meaning of caring.
  • Where once he’d been quick to hide his fears and feelings, he now shared them unashamed and with nothing to prove.
  • Where once he’d been too busy to spend time with his younger brothers and family, he knew the value of having a family he could spend time with.

Going to war had changed my son, but God showed me how He was using those changes to mold him into an amazing man. Changes come, no matter what circumstances we face. It was only when I was finally still that I could see what God had been trying to show me. We can let God use the difficulties of life to mold us into something better or crumble from the stress.

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