Will You Still Trust Me?

The storehouses of heaven overflow with the whispered prayers we raise up for our children. The longings of our heart, the pleadings of our soul, the tearful cries we have shed in joy and utter anguish. The requests we have laid at God’s doorstep for the precious lives He counts us worthy to oversee.

Recently, as I prayed specifically for my son’s future, God wrote on my heart: If it doesn’t turn out that way, will you still trust Me with him?

There was a unique kind of anguish that came with that stirring in my soul. I long for my son to walk with the Lord all of his days. To know the comfort and peace of God’s love and grace. To be spared the weight and consequence of sin.

It’s much the same way Jesus feels about me.

mother_child_heart

Our kids are precious gifts. We hold them close and guard them. We nourish, cradle and love. It is a gut-wrenching, heart-bending, cord-cutting act of obedience to give their lives back to God. It’s an unnatural stretching of our will when we realize that the hearts that beat with our own cannot be tethered to us, but instead must be surrendered to God.

It’s not easy to trust Him with a work that we so desperately want to finish well, from beginning to end.

Train up a child in the way he should go, when he is old he will not depart from it.
Proverbs 22:6

This verse is in the Christian parenting 101 textbook and we embrace it with our whole hearts.

We carry it by both ends…

We train up. We read bible stories, sing every chorus of Jesus Loves Me, and put them in Sunday school. We buy Christian storybooks, stuffed lambs, and pray over their Cheerios. We teach, admonish, pray, exhort, and discipline. We train and we do it well because God has called us worthy and equipped us.

Somewhere along the way, we pick up the other end of the verse. There is no way OUR kid will be departing. We fret, worry, and strive, then strive, worry and fret. We cower from the “perfect” parents because surely we are failing when our toddler bites, our little one doesn’t fit the mold, or our teenager talks back. We wring our hands and plead for the future, thinking that if we just train enough, pray enough, do enough, our children will become all they are supposed to be.

But they do depart, don’t they? They develop a personality and a will of their own. Little lives sprout into big people who, as misguided as they may be, spread their wings and fly off…sometimes in the wrong direction.

We’ve walked the path ourselves. Departing is in our nature. We are flawed imperfect people, raising flawed imperfect people and we won’t be the ones to perfect them. Only God can do that. 

God asks us to train them up in His way, then trust Him. Every time we crack a bible, each time we pray with them, every lesson they hear or worship song we sing – plants seeds. Those seeds are sown and sealed with knowledge, truth, love and hope. So we plant and nourish…and trust God to grow.

We teach that God is trustworthy so they will learn to trust God. We teach them His Way – to confess and find forgiveness, to depend on Him for strength, to lean on Him in trials, to trust in His Word, to believe that He is their Lord and Savior, not just ours.

We show them God not because they CAN’T depart from Him, but so they WON’T be able to. 

“Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.” Psalm 139:7-10

We model faith and reverential fear so that when they depart {sin, fail, falter, disrespect, speak out of turn, make poor choices}, when they are lost – they will know the way back to truth ===> to God.

We show them God’s grace, so they know that no matter how far they run, He always wants them back. We’ll always be there with open arms, but we won’t be with them always. Only He sees and knows all. Only He will never disappoint, or leave, or forget, or fail.

At the end of the day, they need to depend on God a million times more than they need to depend on us.

That is the longing of my heart for my son – that His compass would always be turned toward home – toward God. My heart aches over the thought and I’ll pray against it with all my breath, but while my son may depart, God won’t.

He remains. And yes Lord, I’ll trust You for that.

————————————————————-{***}———————————————————–

There are days when I forget, days when immediate needs supersede these, days when I can’t find the words, but these are the tried and true prayers that I faithfully cycle through for my son. You are welcome to echo them, if you feel so lead: Prayers & Future Longings

*Happily linking up today with Jennifer Dukes LeeHolley Gerth, and Meredith Bernard.

 

 

 

Featured Image Credit

8 thoughts on “Will You Still Trust Me?

  1. Hi Tiffany. I appreciate this post. My kids are teens, and the oldest is preparing to leave home for college next year. So I get this challenge. It’s hard to let go and trust, but it’s the only way to let them develop their own authentic faith. How to support without stifling? That’s my question.

    1. Oh boy, Betty…off to college…so bittersweet. It is a fine balance between encouraging them to stay well rooted and plugged in, but not hovering over them, isnt it?! Some faith lessons can only be learned by walking through them, as hard as that is for our mom heart to watch. Bathing it all in prayer and grateful that the same God that goes before us, goes before them. Blessings and thanks for visiting and sharing your thoughts.

  2. This is such a beautiful message, Tiffany. Trusting God takes letting go, and that is especially hard to do with our kids. Letting go of trying to control them, letting go of trying to keep them from making mistakes, letting God teach them the important lessons through the hurts in their lives. With my kids now grown, I’m realizing how powerful and precious parents’ prayers are–all their children’s lives. God has always been the One who has the power to change their hearts, and I find sweet peace in lifting them up to Him in prayer each day. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Thank you, Sabra. It is hard to watch our kids hurt, make mistakes, and learn the lessons that come through it all. My nature is to wrap him up and fix it, but God is showing me that dependance on Him is eternal, while my solutions are temporary. Gosh, this parenting gig is not for the faint of heart! ;) Thank you for stopping by.

  3. Your heart echoes my own! I have a son and a daughter but recently found myself realizing these very same things when praying for my son. Great peace came from those prayers when I realized that, yes, sometimes we have to be ok with things turn out even though it’s not how we would have them to play out. Thank you for sharing your heart ! W2W

I love hearing from you! Won't you join the conversation?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s