As she was getting out of the car before school, Abby told me that she really needed to go to the bathroom. I told her that she should go when she went into school.
She was adamant that she could not wait long enough to make it to her classroom. And as a child who is dominated by silence in public, asking a teacher for permission use the bathroom before school was simply not an option.
But she had a plan.
She told her little brother, Eli, exactly who to ask and what to say so that he could ask a teacher if she could use the bathroom.
Typical Abby…. Sweet. Quiet.
As a mother, I feel responsible for my contribution to her unhealthy, and false, perception of her cherished and valuable identity in Christ. At my best, I know my nervousness and avoidance have impacted her and encouraged the very qualities I prayed would elude my children.
But it didn’t.
And so now my prayer is that she could learn the depth of God’s love for her. And break free from her fearful disposition.
And so, when Abby retreats into her silence, I hug her and tell her how much God loves her. But I also know that it doesn’t really matter what I say to her. She believes that God loves her. But at eight years old, she cannot comprehend and has not yet become entangled in the POWER that God’s all-consuming love can give her. But God is working in her heart, and in His timing - she can experience the incredible freeing power of God’s love.
But God’s love also abounds in mercy.
That same love that freed me from anxieties grip also empowers me as her mother. And in His mercy, He has given me many more years to communicate His abounding love and glory to my daughter.
But my heart is blessed to know that I don’t hold my daughters future in my hands.
For this reason I bow my knees before the Father,from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name, that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man,so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; and that you, being rooted and grounded in love,may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth,and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God…..
Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen.
Ephesians 3: 14-20 ESV