Milestones are something most of us look forward to, but when we finally reach them, they can be bittersweet, especially when it comes to our children. We find joy in seeing our children learn, grow and mature but at the same time, we feel sadness as we realize that they’re becoming more and more independent from us. As parents, especially as mothers, we want to keep them under our wings forever if we could.
As the school year begins and many of us are sending off our children on their first day of school, we’re celebrating different milestones; first day in kindergarten, first year in middle school, last year in high school, etc. Beneath the beam of pride is a heart that aches for the days of old. And it’s hard to let go. But we have to remember that we must surrender all to God, even our children. God has impressed upon my heart five truths that make it a little easier to let go of my grasp over His precious gift.
1) We need to surrender our children to their rightful master.
Our children are God’s children first. They belong to Him who created them. Who can be a better parent than our Creator, our Father, our Provider and Protector. A pastor friend once said that the best thing you could do for your children is to let God take care of them.
If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him! ~Matthew 7:11
2) We need to disciple our children.
Our children are precious gifts that God has entrusted to us. They are a “heritage from the Lord” (Psalm 127:3). We are to not only pour out our love into them but also keep them grounded in the Word so they, too, are equipped to go out into the world and make disciples. It may seem like it’s going in one ear and out the other, but your words of wisdom will come back to haunt them in the future when they are facing life decisions. I speak from experience.
And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. ~Deuteronomy 6:6-7
3) We need to guide our children in the path to fulfill God’s purpose.
Contrary to what we like to believe, our children don’t exist to fulfill our needs. They were created for God’s purpose and glory. We, as their guardians, need to guide them in the path of righteousness so that they will seek to glorify God and store treasures in heaven and not seek to glorify themselves and go after fleeting treasures on earth.
For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. ~Ephesians 2:10
…everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory, whom I formed and made. ~Isaiah 43:7
4) We need to let our children learn from their mistakes.
When it comes to protecting their young, mothers can be pretty fierce and unrelenting. However, sometimes overprotecting our children can stunt their growth. They need to experience heartache, disappointment and all sorts of challenges. These experiences along with the truth of God’s Word will strengthen them and equip them for the future when they’re no longer under our supervision. More importantly, we need to teach them to rely on God and put their trust in Him.
…but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us. ~Romans 5:3-5
5) We need to encourage our children to reach their full potential.
We’re hindering our children from reaching their full potential in God if we hover over them. This means we need to let them soar beyond our reach. They will no longer fly under our wings but instead, will “take refuge in the shadow of His wings” (Psalm 36:7). No matter how far they go, they will always be within the reach of God’s “everlasting arms.” (Deuteronomy 33:27)
…that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. ~Ephesians 3:17-19
Have a blessed rest of the week!
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