My babies are gone……they are not really babies, as they are 15 and 17 years old, but they are still gone……and they are not really gone, gone, they’re just gone for six days…….but, it feels like forever. I have never been separated from my two teens for more than 2 nights, ever. So six days really is a very long time for us. Some would call me overprotective, but I could care less. They are my babies, God gave them to my husband and I, and there is a lot of messed up stuff in this world that calls for some serious protection…..so we do, and without apologies.
My teens, however, are probably having the time of their lives. They are at The Wilds, which is a Christian Camp for kids. The new church that we have been going to invited them to go, and surprisingly, my husband and I let them. I say surprisingly, because we normally do not let them interact with a big group of kids their age due to that protection I just spoke of. Yet, just like many times in my life, I felt that I was obeying God. Something told us that D.J. and Casey needed this. Perhaps there is something at that camp that God wants them to see or hear. Something, that we cannot give them.
All I can do is guess as this point what that something might be. Perhaps it is seeing other teens who dress the way they do? Maybe it’s being around other teens that believe that purity should be cherished? I would like to think that it’s hearing from oodles of other young people who have vowed to follow Christ’s path and God’s Word. Just as in Job, however, speculation on God’s plan will get me nowhere, but I am humble enough to know that He will probably surprise me!
My teens are good, they are caring, and I think they honestly want to follow Christ. In many ways, they already do. They are believers, and they know right from wrong. They are compassionate to others, and they strive to have good character. Yet, I still think that they have not reached that moment in their walk with Christ, that moment of complete surrender, when we give our lives wholly over to God’s Will. For many Christians, that can take years to finally come around to that point of maturity, and for many people, it does not come at all, leaving them babies in their faith. So, the fact that I think they are almost at the jumping off point, especially at their young age, makes me very humbled and joyous.
I still want to get in there and do it for them……like so many other things that I ‘do’ for them (which they are perfectly capable of doing themselves). It is hard to let go, which is why I was a blubbering mess when they boarded the bus to drive 10 HOURS AWAY TO CAMP. See? I think I did an amazing job for my first ‘Letting Go’ experiment. 10 hours is such a long way away…..no hopping in the car if someone wants to come home, no hopping in the car if I want them to come home. 🙂 Instead, I threw all of my doubts and my fears and my tears up to Him. He will protect them when I cannot, He will guide them where I cannot go, He will comfort them when I am not present……..He will comfort me also.
I cannot wait for them to come home. Not just because the house sounds hollow without their thundering footfalls, their loud voices and their goofy laughs……I even miss the mess they make! No, it is to see what work God has done in them. That wonderful revelation that I will get to witness, when they relay to me what they think the purpose of that week was.
I wrote letters to each of them, for every night of the week that they were there. Long letters, full of my love and thanks for who they are and what they mean to me and our family. Things that perhaps I do not say enough when they are right there in front of me. On the back of each letter, I found a scripture for them to ponder, each one tailored to the struggles that they are currently trying to conquer. Words of encouragement followed the verses, and a promise. The promise that if they are ready to make a commitment to follow Christ in all things and for His Will, I will try my best not to dredge up past mistakes with them. My husband and I have also taken this week to work on our struggles as well, such as getting easily angered and correcting harshly, or without equally praising. When they come home, we can begin again. When they come home, I can breathe again!