I remember the way he would stare up at me, cradled in my arms, his eyes fixed on my own. When he was two, the patter of his tiny feet seemed to chase my every step. At four, he’d clasp his fingers around the shopping cart and trail beside me, too much a “big boy” to ride inside. He was tentative, cautious, and always mindful to follow my lead.
At five and a few months, I held his hand in mine and walked him to all-day kindergarten. Far too soon the day came when he said it was okay to drop him at the curb. I didn’t need to walk him to playground anymore. In a blink, he is blowing me a kiss as he runs off, brave and unashamed, to the Junior High Study.
We’ve done this beautiful dance, him and I. His steps have followed mine and my own have trailed his. And every time he moves further ahead than I would like, my heart tugged by its strings, I’m reminded why we’ve been so careful to point him in the right direction – so he would always know where to go.
We’ve taught, trained, and instructed. The rules made clear and our desires known. He’s been prayed over and under, covered in God’s word, and he has received Him as his own. His toolbox is full and the work is set before him. Now, he chooses the path to follow.
And he’s always been the rule-follower, the teacher-pleaser, the kid with gifts to help and serve. He is eager to spread his wings and seek out his way. The leader inside him cries out to chart his own course, to shine bright his light, to prove that all that has been poured in, is ready to be poured out.
Today he toured his new middle school. Everything inside me screamed to follow him there, to watch from the sidelines, to usher him into the brand new. It would have taken one phone call to be at his side; to point, cover, and protect. But as my finger hovered over that number, the script running through my mind, God whispered words to my heart…
He said, “You’ve done well and I’m going before Him. Now let him follow Me.”
This post is a link-up to the Five-Minute Friday community. An inspired and beautiful group of gifted writers who pour their heart on the page over one word prompt. “Follow” was paired with tears today, friends – they simply grow up too soon. Come join the Friday free-write festivities or the early bird joy on Thursdays on Twitter @ #fmfparty. For details, please visit our gracious hostess, Kate Motaung.
Photo Credit (text overlay by Tiffany Parry)