"Blessed is she, who has believed, that what the Lord has said to her will be accomplished." Luke 1:45

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Enough when it wasn't obvious

Many, many hours of my thought life and prayer life are taken up with the fear that I am not doing all I should to show my children how to love Christ. I always replay the day and see about a hundred ways I could have been more compassionate, showed patience, been generous, been a better spiritual leader. And on and on and on….

I tend to focus on what I have or haven’t done, and therefore completely miss what God is doing right in front of me.

As the Mom of a pre-teen boy, I understand that there are layers to him that I will never see; but for some reason I never thought one of those layers would be his relationship with God. If it hasn’t been obvious, I have assumed it wasn’t present at all.

Until dinner.

Recently I had talked to our son about praying more varied prayers, instead of the same words over and over. We talked about  sharing a concern or praise for God that had happened that day, that way he wouldn’t be stuck in a prayer routine that was more habit than anything else. Following this conversation I have noticed him making an effort to have something new every night at dinner.  This has been great as he would pray for things I didn’t know were especially concerning for him, which helps me know how to better pray for him.
A few days ago, he prayed for help in a specific area. One he has struggled with for years but this was the first time I had heard him petitioning God for strength and guidance in that area.

That’s when it hit me.

My son’s prayer life is growing right in front of me. A little more each day he shares new things with God.
In that moment I realized God wanted me to see that. He was giving me a glimpse of what He was doing in my son’s life, and he was using me to encourage and guide it. It wasn’t something big, or extravagant, but something vital. Something in the quiet of my son’s heart.  Something he was using me to help my son understand. Through God I had been enough even when it wasn't obvious. Thank God!!

I haven’t been focusing so many hours on my fear anymore. Those few little words prayed at dinner helped me to remember that God is much more concerned with my son’s spiritual growth, and he is working all the time to make sure my son is getting what he needs to grow into a wonderful man of faith.

If you struggle with feeling like you just haven’t been enough when it comes to modeling and teaching a spiritual life, I would like to encourage you to be intentional about observing your children. By looking for them, you might find some small, quiet qualities that have escaped your notice.  And if you happen to see something that you feel you need to address, well, that is God working through you too. Don't miss the opportunity God shows you.

Be confident in God’s working;   As the following verses tell us, God gives strength and power to all of His children, including yours and mine today. Even when we miss it.

“Praise be to you, LORD,
   the God of our father Israel,
   from everlasting to everlasting.
 Yours, LORD, is the greatness and the power
   and the glory and the majesty and the splendor,
   for everything in heaven and earth is yours.
Yours, LORD, is the kingdom;
   you are exalted as head over all.
 Wealth and honor come from you;
   you are the ruler of all things.
In your hands are strength and power
   to exalt and give strength to all.
Now, our God, we give you thanks,
   and praise your glorious name.”
1 Chronicles 29:10-13

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