I'm becoming more and more aware of something.
My babies are growing up.
I know. That's not earth shattering news. I know this is the progressive course of life. But it's hard.
I was texting back and forth with my friend the other day and she was getting ready to have a girl's night out with one of her daughters. She said her older daughter had been invited to a sleepover and the younger one was feeling left out. But what she said after that has stuck with me.
"I won't always have the chance to mend her heart but at least this time I can."
I was reminded of this yet again when after watching the Jungle Book our three year old got up in the middle of the night, running through the house screaming and crying. I was jolted awake, confused, trying to figure out what was going on when the sweetest little voice said, "There's a lion in my room." Ahh.... Shere Khan. A lion, a tiger.... all the same to a 3 year old: scary.
I pulled her up into bed with us and she snuggled in close to me. Her crying stopped, her breathing slowed to normal, and she drifted off to sleep as I rubbed her sweet little blond hair and kissed her forehead over and over and over. After a little while, I took her back to bed and returned to sleep myself. And then I heard it, her little cry coming closer and closer. "Mommy, there's a lion in my room." And so we repeated the process again. Snuggling next to Mommy and Daddy, rubbing her little head, giving her kisses, and assuring her there aren't any lions anywhere to be found. She calmed down and I returned her to her bed. Not too many minutes later, I heard it again... this time, a whimper from the dining room. A hesitancy. I met her at the door, arms opened wide. She ran to me and I scooped her up again. Neck to neck, she held tightly. This time I went to her room, sat on her bed beside her and rubbed her head as I whispered softly to her, reassuring her she was safe and there weren't any lions in her room. And that time, she drifted off to sleep for the rest of the night.
It's in moments like these that God often reveals His truths me. I couldn't go back to sleep that night. I tossed and turned and this blog post began coming to life in my head as God softly spoke to my heart.
If you'd only come to me like she comes to you.
So many times I try to do things myself, in my strength and even though I know this will get me nowhere, I continue on anyway. I fail. Then I try harder. I fail again. And I repeat this absurdity over and over again. And time and time again I end up reminding myself that this is futile.
So very futile.
If only I'd just go to Him. Because, unlike me, He never sleeps. He's not caught off guard, confused, and trying to figure out what's going on. He already knows and He's waiting.
Oh how He's waiting for me to just go to Him. To be held. To steady my footing and be reassured.
I often imagine the Father to be a lot like my Dad. Because gracious, He certainly blessed me with an incredible dad. My dad made it easy for me to know that Christ loves me because he showed me through his love every day. When life threw us some curve balls and we lost two of our babies, my Dad is who I wanted to call. Other than Mark's, he's whose arms I wanted to be in because he's always comforted me for as long as I can remember. And the Father whispers:
I'm here to do the same.
He wants to hold me close. He wants me to settle in next to Him so He can steady my heart and show me that I can trust Him when He says everything is going to be okay.
If only I'd just be held instead of running. Instead of depending on myself and what strength I think I have. There's such comfort in just being held. Sometimes true strength is found in letting go. And oh what peace there is in His arms.
You know, I won't always be able to take away my kids' fears and mend their broken hearts, but right now, while it's possible, I'll spend every moment of my life trying, running to them and holding them as long as I can. And each and every time I do, I pray that I'm reminded to run straight to the Father and ...
... just be held.