My first daughter, who will be three in April recently started calling me “MOM.”
When she was still a baby, my husband and I would compete and try to get her to say, “Mama” or “Dada” first. (I mean which first-time parents don’t do that, right?)
We have two daughters now and none of them had “Mama” as their first word. LG’s first word was “Dada” and AJ’s first word was “juice.” How, you may ask? I HAVE NO IDEA! Lol!
After the “Mama” stage, you anticipate when they’ll say, “Mommy” and get excited about it, but when LG started calling me, “MOM” (consistently) a few days ago, it was a different kind of feeling. I felt “sad” to witness my first-born growing up so fast right before my eyes. It wasn’t like an “unhappy-sad,” it was more like a “happy-sad/don’t-leave-me-ever” kind of feeling.
A quote I came up with last year was:
As a mom or dad, we need to keep in mind that our children don’t belong to us.
YES, you might have given birth to them;
YES, you provide for them financially;
YES, you send them to school and help them with homework or projects;
YES, you provide shelter for them;
YES, you feed them multiple times a day;
YES, you teach them how to drive and maybe even buy their first car;
YES, you might have helped a little financially for their wedding;
YES, you are the one that is there during their sad times and happy times, during their victories and losses, during their special moments…and not-so-special moments.
YES, you are their MOM OR DAD…
YES, you do the “work” of raising them…
But before you even became their mom or dad, your child(ren) were already on God’s mind.
HE is the Giver of Life.
HE is the Giver of Strength.
HE is the Giver of Finances.
HE is the Giver of Wisdom.
HE is the Giver of Children… yes, YOUR CHILDREN!
So why do we as parents hold on to our children as if they are ours?
If we just remember that we are only BORROWING them from the LORD, we might be BETTER STEWARDS OF PARENTING THEM.
Generally, parents think that they have 18 years, at least, to be with their children. After that, it’s college life and possibly meeting their future spouse and spending the rest of their lives with that spouse.
18 years. You have:
216 Months or
939 Weeks or
6570 Days or
157680 Hours or
9,460,800 Minutes or
Possibly left with your child(ren).
“The days are long but the years are short!”
So why not spend those years…
As parents, we only desire the best for our children; but which best? “Our” best or “God’s” Best? Because God’s Best is so much more and better than ours. So let’s stop thinking that it is our job, duty, or responsibility to MAKE our children what they need to be.
You see, we make that mistake. We think that God gave our children to us so we can make them into the “masterpiece” that maybe, we failed to be or our parents failed to raise us in becoming.
God gave us our children so that we can “train” and “teach” them the way that they should go…(Proverbs 22:6) not the way that we want them to go.
- Children are a gift FROM GOD. (Psalm 127:3)
- We are only borrowing our children; They are not ours for keeps. (Psalm 127:4)
- We have a limited time with them. Make the most of it! (Deuteronomy 6:7; 11:19)
I love what Jack Wellman says about this verse here.
- Raise the children God has given you in the nurture and admonition of the LORD. (Ephesians 6:4b)
- Our job is not to MAKE our children what we want them to be but what God has already planned for them to be. (Joshua 24:15; Genesis 18:19; Malachi 2:15; Romans 12:2; Matthew 6:33)
***Featured photo by Nathan Anderson on Unsplash!