I remember the first day I held you. The image is engraved in my mind. You were absolutely beautiful. I was amazed that God would bless me with a child and actually trust ME to raise you. What was He thinking?! How could I be trusted to do a good job? The thought of what the future held and all the responsibility that laid in front of your father and me was overwhelming and yet exhilarating.
Excitedly, I held you. Again, I was amazed at God. How could He create you to fit in my gigantic arms so perfectly as a tiny newborn and also as you grew? I remember thinking, “How can anyone doubt God exists?” when they see the miracle of a child and how they grow.
Well, I embarked on parenting about as seriously as I imagine anyone has. I thought I had to be perfect. I embraced my “calling” to mold you into being the best you could be. I prayed, reasoned, talked to others and researched as to the best way to handle challenging situations. I vowed to give it my best…. and when I made mistakes (and I made plenty) I first asked God for forgiveness, asked the same of you and begged the Lord to erase my errors from your memory. Not to preserve my reputation but so that I would not “damage” you.
As you grew, your father and I fell deeper and deeper in love with you. We saw the potential and plans that God had for you. We saw that your soul had an enemy. And that the enemy of your soul would love to stop God’s plans. We saw the battle ensue. And we saw you fight … you desired to do what was right.
You grew in stature and knowledge. You made good choices – we cheered you on. You made poor choices – we prayed and talked your ears off. You made crazy choices – what could we do?! We just watched, prayed and waited those out!
Today is very different. You are grown. And, as most parents, we look back to evaluate. There are no redo’s. Darn. Because we see our mistakes. Times I could have been more gentle, loving, grace-filled. Times that our choices for you were questionable……
Today is different. We don’t want to parent you. But it’s difficult. We want to encourage you and be your cheerleaders. We love you through and through. Quite honestly, more completely and thoroughly and unconditionally than probably any other human being will. That’s just part of being a parent. An ingrained God-given love. It’s wonderful. It’s painful. But much more glorious than troublesome.
Except…. Well…. I’ve seen you’re eyes. When we make mistakes. When we lose our cool (we are so darn human, I hate it….still wanting to be perfect for you). When we give our input. I’ve seen you look at your sibling. I’ve seen the blank stare when I ask a question I shouldn’t or start my “teaching” mode. I shouldn’t. I know. I’m sorry. But I’m not. I love you so much. I want the very best for you. I want to cheer you on with all the wisdom I’ve gained from my mistakes. I desperately want to save you from making the same. I have seen so much more and experienced so much more than you can imagine – that I can foresee where your potential choices will lead…..
I couldn’t stand and watch you run into the road when you were two… it seems cruel to stand and watch you get hurt now…..
But the polls are in….. the overwhelming majority says I must. (cringe)
I hope you’ll be patient with me. I don’t think you would let me walk into the street at my age… and it’s difficult to watch you.
Honestly, though, you do have everything you need. God has equipped you. You have the knowledge, wisdom and ability, to make good choices and you have a keen work ethic to succeed at whatever you set your mind to. You can stand strong in what you know is the best choice for you personally, and go against the tide/pressure when other’s try to lead you into things that just won’t help you.
Every day is full of choices. Choices that matter. Those choices are the building blocks of our character/who we are. I trust you to make wise choices.
I have faith in you. I know your hearts. The Lord will walk with you each step if you let Him. I thought of a wonderful “quip” to shoot over in a text to you today. You know the kind… but the Lord reminded me that it’s your time to hear from Him. Not me. A glorious day, really.
I believe in you. You have nothing to prove to someone who loves you through and through. I miss our times. But you have a life to live. I know you will do it well. Be blessed. Be strong.
You, are my favorite people,
and, I… am
your biggest fan,