Tuesday, July 5, 2016

holding me up

Today I held my 7-year-old son in my lap with his long arms tucked into my side and his gangly legs spilling over my lap while he sobbed. It was the sob of frustration and heartbreak that only a 7-year-old boy would cry about: a video game.

Or so I thought. 

When he had calmed down, he revealed his tenderheartedness. He was frustrated with himself because he had wasted his money on an app that ended up being one of those games where you have to keep purchasing the next episode in order to continue playing it. And as I tried to console him, I asked if maybe he'd like to do something with me, like play a card game and he said, "no," and started sobbing harder. He told me later that he was crying so hard because he had said no to me and thought he had hurt my feelings and felt so bad about it! 

Heart melted.

But I share all that, not because it's important to the story or to help make my point. I shared it because it was just too sweet not to.

And to my point: as he sat in my lap, it crossed my mind that this child would always be my child, even when he becomes an adult. I realized that someday I might hold him through a devastating loss or immense disappointment or dibilitating disease. That's heavy to think about. And I'm not sure I'm built to handle it. I'm certain I'm not. The thought of dealing with such deep loss for either of my children is beyond me.

But the worry doesn't consume me like it has the potential to do. Because looking back through the variety of things I've been through, I've always come through stronger on the other side. Not because I'm amazing or awesome or even close to great.

Only because I've never had to deal with the heavy on my own. Whatever I have needed, God has provided. 
When I couldn't understand the things that plagued me, He gave me perspective. 
When I couldn't handle the sadness, he gave me comfort and peace. 
When I've been at my wit's end, He's given me gentle reminders. 
When I didn't want to get out of bed, He gave me reasons.
He has always provided. Sometimes a lot, sometimes just enough.

So when I see glimpses of what the future might hold as I hang on to my children's hearts, and it looks scary, I just look at the past and know that I can handle that future, because I'm not doing it by myself. He's holding me up the entire way.


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