The days seem long, don't they? But you'll be growing up and you'll look back and feel like childhood was actually such a small piece of your life. You'll have responsibilities that are big and important. You'll be venturing out on your own and caring for others through your work, your ministries, and your own families. You might wonder where the carefree days disappeared to as you struggle to understand a suffering world and how you can be an agent of change for God.
(hand-holding as they walk? unprompted and unaware of me--love it)
As your mother, I'm endeavoring to lengthen your days, teaching you to drink life in, worship the Creator and notice the tiny details of His world. Our life isn't perfect but you're learning to love each other and to remember Who is guiding you. You already have compassion for others. I'm thankful for that. I love these times we are living through together, and so I jot down your funny sayings and your inquisitive conversations with me. I snap photos of your growing bodies and changing faces. I want to remind you one day how blessed and lovely these days were--the preparatory days.
The Bible says the fear of God is the beginning of wisdom. I'm praying that you will always have a healthy fear of Him, that you'll hear His voice and obey it--that I'll obey it, as I walk this road with you. I'm so grateful for Daddy, who also joins me in creating a loving and disciplined youth for all of you. When you see me mess up this parenting thing, know that I'm human and flawed and that I still love you and am seeking forgiveness from the Lord and from you, to begin again. It's that wisdom from Him that leads me to be able to do this.
I pray that mentors will come alongside you as you journey. The Lord sent me many, and if I humbled myself to take their advice, my path seemed so much easier. One such mentor was my mom, your "Mama". She taught me to have a relationship with Jesus and to love people fiercely. Embrace this heritage and that of your other grandparents too and you won't lose your way. God gave them to you as examples of how to carry out His purposes and to help your fellow humans. They do this well.
When life gets tough, and it will, remember we were never promised things would always be easy, only that God would carry us in His arms. If you never let go of that knowledge, you'll feel Him, actually feel His arms tangibly around you when you're unable to understand why you're encountering hardship. I know this because I've been there. I believe I could feel Him in moments of despair because of my history of practicing prayer, worship, writing down thanksgiving and answers to prayer. I was taught to remind myself when life was easy that God is good. As a result, I simply knew it as truth when life wasn't easy.
I love you, my "babies". You're growing up so quickly. Sometimes I stop in my busyness and just stare at you and whisper gratitude that you're mine. I'm sorry I don't always articulate this to you, but it's true. You're talented, beautiful, kind and already fulfilling your purposes on earth, as God reveals them to you. Young people are valuable and being used by God too! May you always love the Lord with all your hearts and love your neighbor as yourself.
I adore you, every one of you.