Like every caring mother, I am very protective towards my boys. I still think of them as naive young kids who need a mother’s guidance and advice despite the fact that they are now bigger than I am physically and adults in the eyes of the law. The easy virtues of the 21st century faze me and I worry about my boys because I do not want them caught up in anything that is not best for their welfare.
But my little ones are now all grown up, and there is a standing half-joke said with huge exasperation by my younger son who tells me that I will still be worrying about him when he is 23. He is quite right. I probably will worry about him until I go to my grave – unless I lose my mind first, of course! This latter comment is not a flippant one: dementia does run in my mother’s side of the family, and my mother suffers from Alzheimer’s Disease.
I berate myself sometimes when I worry about my boys. As a Christian, I should entrust them and their well-being fully to the Lord and believe that He will take care of them. The thing is that I do believe that God can and will look after them. My inability to let go is due in part to my weakness of faith and in part to my desire to maintain a kind of control – over what, I do not know – as if I know better than God what is best for my boys, which is utter nonsense.
Our younger son passed his driving test recently and is currently car-hunting. It is this latter activity that has brought to mind the fact that both boys are now quite the adult and do not need their parents in the same way they did as children anymore. Unfortunately, the parents are beginning to think about the empty nest syndrome instead of looking forward to a child-free home!
I do not know when I will ever stop worrying about my two boys, but my mother-in-law says that it never stops. With this in mind, I have been praying urgently of late that the Lord will draw them to Him so that they will turn to and rely on Him in all their ways. If they were to trust Jesus as their Lord and Saviour and be obedient to Him, it will certainly ease my mind greatly.
As for me, I too must trust in the Lord, not just for His care of me, but also for His care toward those I love. The Christian God is a very personal God, who knows and cares for each of us personally. Jesus’ words depict this and also act as a promise to those who trust in Him: ‘Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?’ (Matt 6:26)
With my little boys all grown up and with their own lives to lead, I can only entrust them into the capable hands of the Lord. I have been a mother hen all my life so the act of letting go, even metaphorically, is not easy. But learn I must; and perhaps one day I will worry less, which is the best I think I might hope for since I am assured that I will never cease to worry about my offspring by my mother-in-law.
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