Nope, no new injuries in the Jackson household. Praise God!! But I recently met a man who told me about how his torn ACL was a blessing. This gentleman was a Div I basketball player, and he told me how he needed this injury. He said it was vital that God humble him. At first, he said, he was angry. But that the injury ended up changing his whole outlook on life. Now, everyday he wakes up, he is full of gratitude. The obvious sincerity of this man brought tears to my eyes. I want to exude joy the way he does.
And I’d give anything for my boys to have this kind of never-ending gratitude. But can I be honest? They don’t. Not even close. Not a one of them. The thing is I feel like I’m not nearly as influential (for good or bad) as I thought I’d be as a mother. Let me give you an example. My sixteen-year-old has never ever, in his over 100 days of driving, said the following: “Have you seen my keys?” Nor has he ever, even momentarily, misplaced his phone. With me for a mother, how is that even possible? If there is anything at all I’ve been consistent about, it is showing him how to lose these personal items multiple times a day.
And then this weekend (hence the late post), the handsome, organized little devil went and swam his heart out at the Tennessee State Meet. He finished 5th and 6th in his individual events and both his relays were 2nd in the state. As you might imagine, I am bursting with pride. But I’m also just in awe of how much work and dedication and focus such a feat requires. Again, one may wonder if he is indeed mine.
But even for personality traits that I might like to give him, like a bent towards optimism, it’s the same story. I think mainly all three of my sons were born with certain dispositions and the influence of nurture is pretty limited. I should rephrase that. Parental nurture is pretty limited. Godly nurture, as the former Div I athlete illustrates, is limitless.
So parenting involves more prayer, more loosening of my own grip, more yieldedness to God’s will and means, than I ever could have imagined. A sense of peace comes not from knowing I’m doing a good job as a mother, but knowing that God has a plan. In fact, His plan is good, pleasing and perfect. (Romans 12:1-2).
May I seek first His Kingdom. May I offer myself to God as a living sacrifice. May I never be conformed to the patten of this world, but renew my mind. Then I will know His good, pleasing and perfect will. May I live each moment yielded to the Lover of my soul.
Praying the same for all of you.