Thursday, July 28, 2011

a prayer of no guarantees

A few items of business:
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Now on to the meat of something that has been tumbling in my head a long time, waiting to be polished.

Today my 2 year old daughter smacked my 6 month old son in the face with a large cardboard block. Pretty hard too. She didn't mean it, she was just twirling with helicopter arms and got too close to his face and boom, impact. Had I seen it coming I would have interceded, and I often save him from sore toes or well intended hug smotherings. However, as much as I love every square inch of him I can't block every shot.

I absolutely love my two kids, I hope this isn't a big secret to anyone in my life either online or otherwise. When I take a look back at all the junk and pain I have gone through with my immediate family one of my first instincts is to figure out a way to make sure that nothing like that ever happens to my precious boy and girl. I want to keep them physically safe. I buy top of the line car seats and follow safety standards to the letter. I also want to keep them emotionally safe and I want to do everything I can to make sure that they don't lose their parents as early or as tragically as I did. I lost my Dad at the age of 49 to heart disease and so along those lines I eat very little red meat, drink red wine and pay close attention to my blood pressure and cholesterol levels. My mom died from mental Illness and so I go to counseling, stay active, and I try to keep a good pulse on my emotional well being so that I can catch any problems early.

I'm a realist, I know I can't protect them from all hurts but I guess I wish for them the bare minimum. I want them to appreciate the depth of life, with its highs and lows, but I do pray that God shields them from the big and rare hurts. The ones that only befall a few.

This is my prayer for my children, and in a way it is my prayer for everyone I love.

My dear precious ones, until you are parents you will not understand how much I treasure you. I delight in your bright eyes and endless energy even on my worst days. Your curly hair and huge smiles have made me thankful to a level I never knew possible. I want to put a hedge around all of us to guarantee that this innocent joyful living will last forever. It is with a heavy heart that I need to let you in on one of life's more painful secrets. There is no hedge that will keep out pain, brokenness and loss.

This brokenness is the reason I can't give you the gift of knowing your grandparents. However, I am deeply dedicated to helping you know who they were so you can carry parts of them with you as you bring your own unique gifts into this world.

I am doing everything in my human capacity to keep you safe from things that try to break you both physically and emotionally. I am coming to the edge of the realization that my love and precautions can't keep the breaks from happening to you. So I am jumping in and rethinking my strategy. A life with no pain isn't really living and so for you I pray just enough pain to appreciate the joy. I know you will have disappointments, failures, and breakups and I will be there for all of those tears. I pray that as much as possible you learn well from the mistakes of myself and others so you can avoid some of life's potholes. I pray that I have the strength to let you fall on occasion, so you can learn how to pick yourself back up. Above all else I pray that God protects you from the thousands of things I worry may befall you. I will do my best to lead you into situations that will give you a knowledge of your powerful and loving God, and that your Dad and I will model trust in him through the way we live our lives. I pray that you will trust in the love of God as you discover it in relationship with him, through his beautiful creation and through interacting with the people whose lives intersect yours.

I will be around as long as I possibly can, and while I am I will do everything in my power to point to a God who will sustain you more than I ever could. Gods love, grace, and providence are the ultimate healers. If you go to him for your truth and healing, you will weather any storm that this "no guarantees" world throws your way.

Amen and Amen.

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