Each and every day I grow more in more in love with my children, more amazed by their uniqueness, more thankful for their presence in my life, and for the opportunity to be their mother and to love them. My gratitude is much more pronounced when I am rested, but nonetheless, there is gratitude on pretty much a daily basis. (I am pretty well rested as I write this.)
Often, the Lord, in His infinite wisdom uses these wonderful little joys to show me that I have ways about me, habit and traits, that are less than wonderful. Two of these are the very bad habits of correcting those closest to me when it is really not necessary (including and especially my husband and children) and the second is
protecting them from ideas or goals that are highly unlikely or what I perceive as just not doable popping their dream bubbles like a crazed woman wielding a ready needle.
To my family’s delight, my daughter and I decided to embark upon a mission of not correcting others. (In truth, her incessant habit of correcting me forced me to take a hard look in the mirror.) It has been liberating for us all. But, as it is a process, we’re all still working on it.
Then, the Lord began to reveal to me my tendency to pop the bubbles of dreams I felt were unrealistic. I was horrified to find that I had been a discourager of my children, and determined to allow their imagination and inspiration to flourish, unabused by me. Since then they have happily and freely aspired to do many amazing things. They have plans to do everything from a lemonade stand in the summer to flying a rocket ship to the moon. I had to draw the line about teaching the devil about Jesus so he could become nice and go to heaven. But, other than that, I’ve been pretty supportive and encouraging.
Then, my daughter hit me with the big one.
“Mommy, when I grow up, I’m going to Patrick Henry College (we are already planting the seeds), and then when I graduate I’m going to China and get the mean laws changed so that the Chinese people can learn about Jesus.”
Now to those of you who are naturally supportive and don’t find the urge to say “Honey, I find that highly unlikely” – God bless you. Immediately instinct kicked in, but before I could get the words out, the Holy Spirit said “How do you know what I created her for?” And so I simply said “And what about the underground church, Tig-pooh?” To which she replied “In my free-time, I’ll help the underground church.”
This is my daughter. My amazing fearless little girl. She is going to march over to China and get them to change the laws. Why is she not going to focus simply on the underground church? Because they already know about Jesus, and she is concerned with all the people who don’t know about Jesus, and she figures it would be much easier to just change the laws. My instinct was to protect her and help her find a more reachable goal.
But how do I know what God created her for?
It’s not my job to protect her from disappointment. She can do all things through Christ Jesus who strengthens her. It’s my job to encourage her to seek the will of the Lord in all aspects of her life, especially that of her future. With so many children seeking to be movie stars, rock stars, sports stars, rap stars, it delights me that she wants to the impossible for Christ.
Have you ever really seen a balloon pop? A popped balloon, besides being damaged and unusable, pulls away from the one who popped it – not toward them.
Yet, our children are fearfully and wonderfully made, created in His image for a purpose – for His purpose. Let us aspire to make sure our children know that too. Let us aspire to encourage our children to believe God for the impossible.