Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The Anchor Holds

Every January first, for several years, I would flip through my daily journals and extract highlights to write a one page “Year in Review”. Recently, while in a reflective mood I went back and read the previous annual reviews. It was interesting to reminisce on the different ways my children had grown; physically, academically and spiritually. I would smile as I was reminded of their personal goal setting, such as auditioning for the lead in a school play or pining for an award at the Science Fair, and then remember how their lives had transpired.

When my children were in elementary school many of my journal entries were typical motherly concerns, such as, “Is this illness something serious or just a 24 hour bug?” Then came the pre-teen years and with them came a whole new set of challenges (and a much deeper prayer life for me) as I had to learn to make the transition from having fun-loving children to dealing with hormonal havoc. Many journal entries were desperate pleas for wisdom, patience, and understanding.

As parents we raise our children with the goal of them someday being on their own and independent. Not only is parenting a learning experience for us as we learn to let go and trust the Lord more, but it is an emotional and challenging time for our kids as they sprout their wings and learn to fly. I remember one of my longest weeks as a mother came when our oldest child, a son, was in the 5th grade and went to school camp. It was his first time to be away from home for more than a night and he returned exhausted, but with an unmistakable increased maturity about him. And I realized that I, too, had gained a spiritual maturity as I had to learn to trust God on a whole new level.

Reading previous entries and remembering how God came through, continues to give me much hope for the future. Remembering how I worried during those years, yet seeing now that God had everything under control all along – encourages me. I can’t help but notice how my own faith has grown, too, along with my children. It is finally sinking in that God is all-knowing and I am not. That He loves my children (and now our grandchildren, too) more than I do. Words can’t describe how comforting it is to know that nothing is going to happen to them or to me that isn’t first filtered through His merciful and loving hands.

As I go back in time and relive the ups and downs of marriage and children, one common thread stands out: the anchor holds and scripture doesn’t lie. Jesus is a rock, a safe place in a world that seems to have gone mad. He never changes. All He asks is that we turn to Him, trust Him, and put our faith in Him.

The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold (Psalm 18:2).

In Him,
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