Every Thursday on Facebook is “Throwback Thursday.” It’s a weekly movement for Facebook followers to reminisce in pictures about a particular time or event in the past. Often, you will find funny and cute school pictures and videos, impromptu family gatherings or “that picture” of yourself that you thought you had hidden away…until your mom posts it. Almost every week, I find myself sifting through the baby books and photos of my two children, now ages 28 and 26, hoping to find a picture of them or us to post. There are my favorites: the first day of school, vacations, and those cute baby pictures. It’s amazing how a picture can capture so many memories and fill my heart with so much emotion.
However, gone are the Legos, Barbies, and picture books. My children have grown up, moved out, and are now amazing adults pursuing careers and relationships. So, how does a parent let go and give them the freedom they need and crave? To parents who are watching their children sprout wings of independence, God gives strong direction followed by a powerful promise.
Strong Direction: our job as parents is to teach.
“Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up” (Deut.11:18-19 NIV).
Followed by a promise: as we let go, we need to trust our children will hang on to God.
“Teach your children to choose the right path, and when they are older, they will remain upon it” (Prov.22:6 NLT).
Teach and then trust. Parenting is a divine partnership, with God as the controlling partner. Our acts of obedience to teach our kids merge powerfully with His promises to carry them through to the end. We need to trust God to finish the work He has begun in them. The work may not be evident immediately, and there will be bumps in the road, but teaching and then trusting helps this mommy’s heart to let go.