Being a mom is the best, but probably one of the hardest jobs in the world - or so I think. We want to hold on to our children, yet we're constantly faced with letting them go in one way or another. After all, the ultimate goal of parenting is to raise a self-sufficient person who can go out from us and make their own mark on the world - and hopefully a positive mark.
Dale did an excellent job Sunday of teaching from 1 Samuel 1. This passage is about a woman named Hannah, who could not have children and so desperately wanted a son. She vowed that if God gave her a son, she'd give him back to the Lord. So, God did bless her with a baby boy. And after raising him for about 3 years she handed him over to the temple to be raised by Eli the priest. She wanted him to be raised in the house of the Lord so his life would be service to God. But the temple was far away from her home and she'd only see him once a year after she left him. In our culture, this seems so bizarre to do something like this. But the point Dale made was that she was only able to do this because her purpose in life did not depend on her son. Her joy and satisfaction was found in God, not her child, even though she prayed and waited so long to have him. We are only able to let go of those things in which we don't look to for ultimate fulfillment. That spoke a huge message to me. When most every part of my world revolves around my children, it's easy to make them the center of it. They are a huge priority and I treasure them as amazing gifts from God. But, I cannot find my purpose in them. My purpose & fulfillment in life comes from the Lord. Right now, part of that purpose includes molding 2 little lives, but one day they will be on their own. And at that point I don't cease to have purpose, and certainly don't cease to have joy and satisfaction - as long as I'm finding those things in God, who has promised to never leave me. So, it's a great message and one I'm sure I'll continually have to remind myself of... especially the day I have to let Hannah go to her first day of kindergarten.
Here's my two sweeties on Mother's Day.
And here's my mom & dad.
My mom is a great mother who I'm more grateful for the older my kids get. She put up with a lot from me - more than I even know I'm sure! Yet, she didn't give up. She continued to do what she thought was right in disciplining and training me so that I could grow up and go out on my own. I know that hasn't been easy, but she's been a trooper and has continually shown unconditional love and support in all phases of my life. And for that, I'm very grateful.