Sometimes it’s hard to hear a voice that cuts deep into our habits but if we’ll listen it can often be the very thing that consecrates the depths of our souls.
I came face to face with this when my oldest son was around 18 months old.
A good friend who was walking through infertility warned me of how I was holding onto my toddler like there was no tomorrow.
Justin, my son was incredibly shy and didn’t like leaving my side and to make matters worse I was struggling through the ache of multiple miscarriages. By this time I had experienced two and was on medicine in hopes to prevent any further ones from occuring. (Unknown to me just weeks later I would miscarry once again)
My friend looked me square in the face and told me she thought I was holding onto Justin tighter every time I lost a baby…
Ouch, not what you want to hear in the middle of loss, but it was sadly true.
Sometimes this kind of insight hurts more because we know the truth of the words spoken.
I remember barely responding loud enough for her to pick up on my words as I told her she was probably right. I was holding on tighter to him with every loss I was somehow hoping to heal my deep wound.
In the days following this incident I began trying to loosen my grip on his little self bit by bit. It was interesting the more I let go of my son, the further he traveled from my knees and the more independent he became.
The nonverbal messages we communicate to our kids, even our toddlers can cause them to think we can’t survive without them when this is our moment to lean into God more.
As I experienced yet another miscarriage soon after this, I remember holding my friend’s warning close, knowing my son’s need for me wouldn’t ever be able to heal my busted up heart…
Loss has a way of causing us to gasp for air before we reach for the oxygen God has for us. As I began to let go of Justin and let him be the child he was created to be and took my aching heart to God I began to find the healing I needed. Sometimes we go to others when our heart is in need of a healing only God can bring.
Eventually my story took a hope filled turn as I got pregnant again, although I miscarried the baby’s twin God blessed with another healthy son, in fact He blessed us with four boys in all. Its crazy how such gifts could come from such a difficult time but God has a way of doing the unthinkable!
It was in these years God first began teaching me the beauty of releasing our sons.
And the lessons continued to come whether they came when the boys were learning to walk, heading to Kindergarten or going into their middle school or High School years. At each bend in the road God seemed to be calling me to loosen my grip and entrust them to Him.
Now as we stand smack in the middle of a new transition with our youngest son beginning his first year at college (two states away) and having 4 sons in 4 states (KY, IN, MO and one in Alaska), I can see God’s hand helping me release each one of our kids little by little every year….continually letting go of them and trusting God in every release.
For within every transition there is loss...whether it’s the loss a new mother feels when her baby is born and she’s no longer pregnant, or the transition of watching a child move from the awkward stages of middle school to applying for college.
All of these changes bring a loss of what life was and yet they bring something new as well.
It’s when we are able to grieve our loss and look for the blessings within the new beginnings that we are able to find peace within our days.
Some losses though are hard to see past like the death of a loved one or the loss of a dream that accompanies singleness or even the devastation of betrayal. And yet even inside the hurt of these losses there is hope and healing that makes us stronger for the days of transition ahead.
Pain has a way of giving us a voice...you’ve probably seen this on the news when a brave soul speaks through their pain and a story unfolds from one side of the country to the other or maybe you’ve experienced the open ears of friends who are hushed by the hard days you’re living in. Struggles have a way of gathering crowds and allowing the ones in the middle of it to be heard….the depth of pain, the louder a voice can be heard.
God has a way of allowing nothing in our lives to be wasted, not even our pain.
As the power of our ministry is often tried in the crucible of pain its also here where our ministries get birthed.
Although so many of us Mommas would rather cuddle up with our kids and get lost within the throngs of Disney movies this is not what God designed us or our children for.
Friend, this is not what our children were made for –they were made like us to further the Kingdom.
Our children have been given a purpose of their own to thrive in.
We are their Momma’s their greatest cheerleaders, whether they’re in our presence or apart from us.
Our kids will not grow into the courageous young people God intends for them to be to impact our world if we don’t freely release them.
There is beauty watching our sons & daughters grow into godly adults who do crazy awesome things for the furthering of the gospel!
So let us let go knowing we are letting them go and live out the calling that is upon their life and may we enjoy watching them live this out well!
As we stand upon the porches of our homes waving good bye to these amazing kids God has allowed us to nurture and grow may we graciously release them back to God’s work as Hannah released Samuel and as Moses’ Mom released him.
Mothers have been releasing sons and daughters for years, in fact you are one who was released.
So sweet Mommas as your heart aches for the days of the past know you have played a pivotal role in the story of God for this generation and generations to come-we are making history as we let go of our children and entrust them in the capable hands of our heavenly Father!