"Anyone can have one kid. But going from one kid to two is like going from owning a dog to running a zoo." - P. J. O'Rourke

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

This May Hurt

How many times have I had to put my children through pain for their own good?  When Molly was younger she got a really large splinter in the bottom of her foot.  After a few days, it became apparent that she would need to have a doctor remove it.  It had become quite painful and infected.  The doctor would need to make a cut in the bottom of her foot, so they would need to numb the area first.  I watched as the doctor took a large needle and stuck it several times into the bottom of Molly's foot.  She cried.  My heart almost broke watching Molly go through that pain, yet I knew it had to be done.  The splinter had to be removed, and this was the best way to do it.

As a mother, my heart is inexorably bound to the hearts of my children.  I am more concerned for them than I am my own next breath.  As hard as it was to watch my children go through painful experiences as young children, it is infinitely more painful to watch or wonder about the painful experience they have yet to face.  This has been my struggle for the past year, or so.  I want to protect my kids; I want to orchestrate their future; I want to keep them from the difficulties of growing up, and I can't.  I can't see beyond the next turn, so I certainly lack the ability to know what is best for them.

I do believe that God loves my children with an intense and consuming love, and I do believe that he holds their future in his hand.  The struggle I have can best be summed up on this C. S. Lewis quote -

"What do people mean when they say 'I am not afraid of God because I know He is good?' Have they never been to a dentist?....We are not necessarily doubting that God will do the best for us; we are wondering how painful the best will turn out to be."
And so, I wonder how painful the best is going to be for my kids. Sometimes it keeps me up at night. I wish I could say that I am always "trusting God" for my children's future, but that would be a lie.  I can say that I am fighting a battle of faith to trust God for my children's future, but it is a battle!

So, I cling to verses like Jeremiah 29:11, "For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."

And I listen to songs like this -

And I fight the battle to have more faith, knowing that their loving heavenly Father will only allow them pain that is for their good.

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