Saturday, July 23, 2016

They Are His

I remember that hike. My memories app tells me it was three years ago, 2013. A hot and hazy July day in Virginia. We had made our way to the top and taken in the view of our town. The sun was now setting and we were headed back down the mountain when a certain energetic little boy took off running. We couldn't keep up with him since we had taken turns carrying him most of the way up. Now it was his turn to wear himself out. As I turned the corner, this was the exact site I saw. My boy, standing at the foot of a man-made cross, looking up in what appeared to be an act of worship. I could barely contain myself but somehow managed to capture this moment that would forever be etched in my memory.

The symbolism is not lost on me. The meaning resonates within my very being as a mother. It is my greatest calling. To point them to Jesus. When I begged and pleaded and prayed for God to make me a mom, I knew what I was asking for. I knew what this meant and what I would become. Oh yes, on any given day I change diapers, nurse, prepare meals, care for wounds, mend broken hearts, give kisses, grant wishes, create, catch bugs, enter imaginary worlds, read books ten times over, sing songs even more...I teach, guide, love, serve, give and give some more. But these are just the daily tasks. The daily insurmountable list doesn't come close to touching the impact we as parents are making for eternity. It is not a job, it is the highest of callings. It brings along with it the accepted challenge of bending tender little hearts toward the One who created them.

I have to remind myself these little people may have my nose or take on my own tendencies, but it is in God's image they were created, not mine. They are His children, only mine to borrow. If they resemble anything of me, I pray it will be the reflection of Christ in my life. It is my constant reminder that I cannot point them to a place I am not looking myself. This isn't about sharing whatever is on my plate or giving of my time. This is about committing to worn out knees on their behalf. Begging and pleading and praying didn't end at the moment God answered my request to become a mother. That is only where it began. This is a relentless battle for their minds to understand Him and His Word while their souls accept and receive His gift of eternal life.

When I am tired, emotionally empty, physically exhausted and simply spent, I must remember this image, this memory, this pursuit. When I am called on for one more bedtime kiss, one more middle of the night wake up call, one more time..., let me be reminded of the calling I've been given to point them to the One. The One who made them. The One who gave them life. The One who died for them. The One who offers them eternal life. The One who loves them more than I ever could. The One who planned each and every one of their days before I ever even met them. The One who entrusted me to be part of that plan for their lives.

Already this week I was reminded that I can't. I'm not. I am their mother in title. They are my life's work but they are His eternal purpose.

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