Proverbs 22:6 “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”
Every parent can resonate with the fact that children are a gift from God. From the birth of our our firstborn to the youngest, each are unique in character and are love uniquely and deeply.
Today, the last ‘child’ left our home – seemingly for good to move to a far away southern state. While the opportunity to visit during winter months seems appealing, the distance is felt just the same.
Also, while it was very easy to think about each of our boys leaving with some emotion, our daughter, our only daughter, seems so very different. The relationship between a daughter and her Dad is special and will define what man she will eventually marry. How a father treats his daughter will set the tone for the man that will eventually be her knight in shining armor.
I must admit, there is still a part of me that wants all my children close. Having gone through the same myself, those memories of leaving home have flooded back as we watched her drive away this morning. My mom is no longer there to ask how she felt or how she may have dealt with the separation anxiety. My dad, who had six daughters, said each one was special and unique in their departure.
As I began to talk to God, I realized He knows best what it is for a child to leave. I have left Him for people and things only to return realizing they did not satisfy.
As a babe in Christ, I was given the best start a man could get with a man who mentored and held me accountable to the very things that have given me a wonderful foundation. Growing to love His Word, relying on His promises, living to serve and grow, I feel I have been given a wonderful gift.
God is not so far from where we are, how live, what we feel and how to deal with every situation in life.
We have given each and every one of our children what we felt was the best we had to offer. As my daughter left today, there wasn’t anything I wouldn’t have given her, should she have a need. She left with our blessings. We told her that our door is always open. Arms will ache to hold her. Hearts will need cheering and knowing we will see her again, gives hope.
As a child of God now for twenty eight years, my heart longs for Heaven and home more than ever. My Father has demonstrated His love for me. He is more real than anything I can touch or see. I KNOW He loves me. I KNOW He accepts me and will protect me. But, I also KNOW that He will receive me into glory with open arms and hear “Welcome home my child!”
As each stage of this life rolls on, the prospect of what is to come becomes more and more clear. For our family, there will be family vacations, holidays to gather together, weddings, births and birthdays; graduations and being there for each other during the hard times. Yet, there will be so much to look forward to.
Hope heals. Hope helps us to rise up when our hearts are low. Hope gives confidence that there will always be something better on the other side. Whether that is the other side of 24 hours, or the other side of eternity. Hope gives us confidence to face whatever may come with the fact that me and God can handle anything.