If I could quit…
I would. And I’m not a quitter.
I really feel like the joke is on me when it comes to parenting. I know, a totally faithless comment to make. But I’m not feeling too full of faith and confidence in my parenting right now. After all these years of parenting, and this last 15 months of single parenting I have yet to figure out what the point of parenting is. I am pretty sure though, that it isn’t for the kids.
This is where the rubber meets the road for me when it comes to bitterness. I’m angry. There, I said it. Take my husband, take my possessions, even take my health, but mess with my children and you’ve just crossed the line. For a mother, her children are everything to her. We literally sacrifice our bodies for these other humans. Every minute of our lives is spent nurturing them, praying for them, worrying about them and teaching them. The return is not so great. Not yet anyway. Well, you say, maybe if you had taught them better….yeah, don’t go there, I’ve already been there in my head, a million times over. I’ve reviewed every method of parenting invented and wondered if we had tried some of them if the results would be different.Truth is, I’ve yet to see a method that is fool-proof. The only thing that brings godly results is a regenerated heart and there is no method to ensure that.
After meeting with a few friends last night and receiving their encouragement and advice I can’t say that I feel better but I do feel less alone. I have no idea what Chris would do, we hadn’t reached this point in our parenting together. And really, what does it matter what he would do, he’s not here to do it. And yeah, I’m mad about that too.
I may be one of the few that does not believe that Proverbs 22:16 is a promise or a command, it could even be interpreted as a warning. It’s a proverb. A proverb is a saying that contains some general truth. In this case an inspired truth, but a proverb nonetheless. That being said, without even using this passage to heap mountains of guilt upon myself I still feel like a failure. As I contemplated this thought this morning after venting my anger to the Lord I wondered if this is where he wants me. Not in my own confidence as a parent, but in His confidence as Sovereign Lord, even over my children. Yes, I know, they ultimately belong to Him, but he gave them to me. And what I’m realizing is that it’s time to give them back. I can’t even describe how hard this is. The fear is palpable.
So what promises do I have as a parent? I have the promise of answered prayer. We can plant and water (and we should) but God gives the increase.
What does it mean to surrender your children to God? I’m still learning that.
“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.”
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