I wish she was still this little. Life was so much simpler when the kids were younger. Mom problems are a daily thing, aren’t they? I mean, are they getting the right amount of love, discipline? Are they getting enough of my time? Is the laundry washed or do I have to stay up late doing laundry? Dinner, dishes, work, homework, errands, business, responsibilities… They can get a bit overwhelming sometimes. Okay that’s a tad of an understatement. Very overwhelming sometimes. I mean I was up late last night with my daughter helping her put the finishing touches on her independent study week project because she “forgot” to do a few things we had discussed days prior, and then assured me she had done. Now, I keep thinking about her (and my son who had a project due today, as well) praying she doesn’t bomb her presentation from nerves. She is so shy, my sweet princess, just like me.
But I digress… My biggest prayer in life is that my children love the Lord with all of their heart, mind and soul. Am I teaching them that? Am I a true example of that? God reminded me this week, that He really is in control and that He’s got my back. I don’t have to be perfect, because He will take the reigns when He has to. Wait a minute… Take the reigns? Ha, ha. There I go again. He’s got the reigns. As my kids grow older, and as I now have a legal adult as a son, I pray even more and advise a lot less, well because as an adult, he has to make his own decisions, make his own mistakes, learn his own lessons. That, by far, is the toughest thing I have had to do as a parent. Well earlier this week, I was praying, asking God, “Well are you really talking to my sons? Are you really showing them the way to go? Are you really making yourself known? I mean, I can talk and talk but I’d rather be quiet and let you speak to them, but can you just tell me you’re doing it? That they are hearing you?” Basically, I’m asking God to show me He’s doing His job as the sovereign God of the universe, to show me He’s fulfilling the promises in His word. He must truly sit on His throne and laugh at me. I truly do picture that. But you know what He does, He shows me anyway. He blatantly shows me He’s on it, just to lovingly appease me. It’s not a “God wink”. It’s a huge God bear hug. That’s the nature of our relationship. He loves me as His daughter and appeases me every time I need it. For a long time, I was blind to that, but that’s a story for another day. Which leads me to…
Never mind the fact that last week God blatantly showed me He is avidly working in my 14 year old’s life, blatantly showing Himself to him and Danny (my 14 year-old) in turn being obedient to His God. Never mind that He has many times shown me this with all my children. I needed another little reminder that He is talking to my kids, that it’s not just my voice they hear talking to them about faith and right vs. wrong. So there I am silently praying all day, chatting with my Father. And right at bedtime, my beautiful, sweet, loving, sassy nine year-old princess going on fifteen runs downstairs and starts yelling at her brother. I mean she went off on the poor, innocent, deer-caught-in-headlights teenager who had been helping her print images for her project half the day. She was accusing him of taking her “brown box with stones” that she loves so much from her dresser. He assured her he hadn’t touched it. “Yes, you did! I saw you leave my room earlier! I know you did something to it!” She screamed. Of course, I interjected, trying to ask the valid question of, “Why in the world would your 14 year-old brother want your box of stones?” I mean, seriously! She was adamant! After ensuring Danny was not the culprit of such a senseless act, I asked him to go help her find it. They found it immediately. Guess where it was? On her night stand. She hadn’t looked there, of course. I made her apologize to him and get in bed. Five minutes later I’m laying in bed next to her, as we do every night, to read our mother-daughter devotional. She was still upset, but I think it was more because she was wrong and had to apologize. But, I may be wrong. I hugged her, we chatted about the situation a bit. I told her I’ve flown off the handle before, that I’ve made assumptions and had to apologize, too. I reminded her we all make mistakes, but need to learn from them. We opened the devotional for that day. Our norm is that she reads the Bible passage and I read the devotional.
I will never forget the Bible passage she had to read only five minutes after yelling at her brother, making assumptions, not listening… It was Ephesians 4:29-32.
29 Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. 32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
She started crying again. I couldn’t believe it! I hugged her and kissed her. I told her, “My love. Isn’t it amazing how much God loves you? Isn’t it amazing that just five minutes after what happened, He has you read this? He is gently and lovingly correcting you. He is loving you towards Him”. It made me think of how He loves me and lovingly corrects me towards Him every day. And if He does it for me, why in the world will He not do it for my children that I fight for on my knees daily? And I thanked Him. I thanked Him for loving me so much, that He is constantly reminding me that He’s in control, that He’s answering my prayers for my children, and that He is lovingly talking to them every day, even if I don't see it all the time. I’m not supposed to. These conversations are mostly between Him and them, as they should be.