Once again, the Lord has been teaching me some lessons through my children. Every school day I take my kiddos to school. My youngest schooler right now is in kindergarten. At the beginning of the school year, she was very uncertain about going down the hallway to her class. As a parent, I was only allowed to go so far before I had to let her walk the rest of the way on her own. She would hold my hand tightly as we slowly walked down to the double doors where she would have to go it alone. As the year progressed, she held my hand less tightly and would even skip along, her ponytail bouncing up and down all the way to the double doors. Now that is almost the end of the year, she doesn’t even need to hold my hand, but does enjoy the company if I walk her down to the double doors. If she spots one of her friends along the way, they both instinctively reach for each other’s hands to walk each other to class.
Although it is hard to be boosted from the hand holding position so easily, it is nice to see that the Lord has given her friends to walk with her along the way. As she has grown in independence, I have been given a tiny view of our future together as mom and daughter. As she grows, I will be replaced as the hand holder by friends that the Lord will bring into her life. It seems so bittersweet and it makes my heart ache, but I will need to trust that as I turn her daily dependence on me over, that I turn it over to the Lord and trust that He will bring the people into her life who will point her to Him. He has faithfully done that in my life right now. I have a core group of friends who support me and get me through the hard times, all the while pointing me to Him and His plan for my life.
I know I will always be a strong influence and source of support her entire life, but as a friend of ours once reminded us, we must give them roots and then give them wings. Our parents have done it for us, and they remain a strong source of physical and emotional support to this day, but they have also given us wings to live our lives and raise our family.
By turning our children over to the Lord in prayer, we hope to do the same for them. By looking to the Scriptures daily for things to pray over them and their present (and future) friends, maybe it will make my heart ache a little less as I remember that the Lord is the only one who can truly protect them.