On a crisp fall afternoon, a nurse softly placed my very first pink squirming life into my arms and God pushed the start-button for motherhood.
Fast-forward twenty years and my tiny bundle is driving back to college after a weekend road trip with her girlfriends. Independent, strong-willed, determined to succeed in a world I tried desperately to prepare her for, she sprints toward a future she’s only dreamed about.
Today’s rainy weather put me in a reminiscent mood, wondering what part her father and I played in hurling her out of the nest. Memories flashed. And, before I knew it, I’d placed them all in one of three categories; stumble, hinder or launch.
“Mom, what do you think about this dress?” Standing in the dressing room and twirling for dramatic effect, my teenager waited for my answer.
I love it. She looks so beautiful. “I think it’s the one.” I smile.
“What about Dad? Do you think he will like it?” The low neckline had her concerned.
“I think it will be fine. Let me talk with your Father.” I winked, now concerned myself.
STUMBLE; moments in time where I tripped my daughter up—teaching her a wife can manipulate her husband—showing her it’s okay to openly side with a child over her husband.
“I will do that for you.”
“I’ve got it.”
“I’ll pay for it.”
“Don’t worry about it.”
“I have it covered.”
“I want to help.”
How often had I done the very thing my child should have been leaning on God for? Over the years, I had stolen too many faith-building opportunities from the Lord to count. How much stronger would her faith be today if she had been given less from me and more of a reason to seek her Heavenly Father for the desires of her heart?
Hinder; moments where I intercepted, delayed, or even blocked the Holy Spirit from using a difficult situation to be the One to come through for her.
“Mom, I want to come home.” Her voice cracked on the phone. After only two days in college, she was ready to trade her dorm room for chores and younger siblings.
“Honey, I really don’t think coming home is a good idea. You can do this.” I encouraged her to stick it out, even though every mommy-fiber in my body screamed for my baby chick to return to the nest and make our home whole again.
Launch; moments where we fling, thrust and hurl our child into their very own unknown—to dig in, move forward and press on.
I regret those moments where I’ve stumbled and hindered but give a shout of thanks to a God who forgives and makes new. I am humbled by this parenting journey and pray I continue to evolve into a mother who uses each opportunity to launch my child into His plans for their life.
· What about you? Have you stumbled, hindered, or launched your child today?