We interrupt this post for the following announcement: I won two blue rosettes, two red rosettes, four blue ribbons and two red ribbons at the county fair! Woo! Hoo! Now on to more serious news.
I prayed for this child, and the LORD has granted me what I asked of him. So now I give him to the LORD. For his whole life he will be given over to the LORD. 1 Samuel 1:27-28 (NIV)
Although I joke about celebrating when my “little birdies” leave the nest, in reality letting go of my children is done one finger at a time. It has been particularly difficult with youngest son, my baby, which I think has always been one cause of the conflicts between us. A difficulty that began the day he was born. I was actually late to his birth! It was a scheduled C section and I was supposed to be at the hospital at six in the morning, but overslept! I would have kept him inside me a little longer because he’s been on the run since he emerged. Climbing before he could crawl. Running before he could walk. He didn’t want to scribble. He wanted to draw. Didn’t want picture books. Teach me how to read! He has always been ahead of himself. Ready to face the world and move on! Move on before his mom was ready for him to go. One finger at a time, I lost my grip. He has become a remarkable young man. Independent, motivated, compassionate and kind. Last week, he announced that he and a friend were taking a trip this week. Celebrating some milestones in their lives, they planned to hike seventy miles on the Florida trail over five days. They would carry all their supplies and tents as the camping along the trail is primitive. They stocked up on heater meals and water purification tablets. They bought a small propane stove for boiling water. They mapped their route, notified a friend of where they would be and established times to check in by phone. He saw no reason to be concerned, despite temperatures that would dip into the 20s at night. He wouldn’t let me check his pack. Wouldn’t take suggestions of food or other supplies. I tried my best to talk him out of it, but he was determined. If there is one thing I have learned as his mom, there is no talking him out of or into anything unless it is his idea. I was praying that it would rain so he would cancel his trip when God reminded me that over the years, I have prayed that youngest son would experience God for himself. That his faith in God would be his own and not some secondhand relationship passed on from his parents. And God said to me, “Who are you to prevent him from the time that I may have planned for that to happen?” So, I shut up and trusted that God would take care of him. They ran out of propane and water so after two nights backtracked to the car and came home. I was so relieved. Until last night when he said, “I’ve decided to go to Haiti. I think I can do some good there.” I just put my head on the table and moaned. And I was just worried about a week in the woods. God is faithful. My hand is open.