March 27, 2013

Because I’m their mom…

photoI know it’s true but sometimes (well, often) I forget.

They don’t belong to me.

I don’t own them.

 

They were His long before I even knew them and they’re still His.

Maybe it’s because they’re flesh of my flesh that I feel this way.

Like I have some sort of say in how their lives should be – a claim to what kind of future they will have and what that journey should look like every step of the way – because…

 

I’m their mom.

They were formed in my womb.

I’ve literally poured out my life for them.

 

If you’re a mother, you know what I’m talking about.

 

The cry you recognize in a room filled with infants.

The way they smell.

That birthmark placed perfectly on her right hip.

The sleepless nights. The countless tears. The fear.

The “what if’s”.

The disciplining when it would’ve been so much easier to let it slide.

The interrupted intimate moment with the husband because the sweet one can’t sleep and needs to crawl into bed with you.

The issues with school friends that bring out the Mama Bear worst in you.

The moments when your heart flutters as you watch them fall asleep.

Their soft skin.

Their questions. Oh, their many questions.

The bad word that slips out of their mouths when you least expect it – and you’re still blaming the neighborhood kid.

When they pray!

The innocence you long to cling to that slowly slips away…

The way they call you “mom”…

 

No, they’re not mine. And, they’re not yours either.

 

And I guess in some strange way, I’m grateful.

 

Thankful that there is a God who knows more…loves more…

And can and will do immeasurable more than I could ever ask, think, or imagine for the precious treasures He has allowed me the privilege of taking care of this side of eternity.

 

I’ve been complimented a number of times regarding how Jim and I have raised our children.

But…

When I look at this child…

When I look at Erin, I see how she is His.

And although God has given me the amazing honor and privilege of being her mother, I see His fingerprints all over her life – the countless ways in which she is so like Him. The things about her that we as her parents could never teach her – because we’re still learning ourselves.

 

Today is Erin’s last day in the Dominican Republic!

I can’t wait for her to come home!

But, I’m so thankful for the time that she’s been away – taking in all that God desired to show her and do through her in the midst of what He’s doing in the D.R.

 

As I read her journal entry, I was reminded, yet again.

She belongs to Him.  

 

Today we went to the Emmanuel House! It was absolutely amazing! As soon as I got there two girls came over to me and grabbed my hand and hung out with me the entire time. They were so welcoming and their smiles were contagious. Even though I didn’t understand everything they were saying, it didn’t matter- we were friends immediately.

Later on, a few girls got up and sang some songs in English. I felt so blessed to hear them sing about Jesus in our language along with being able to sing to them in Spanish. When we sang “Mighty To Save” all the kids sang along and the smiles on their faces showed that they knew what the words of the song meant. Although many were young, the love for Jesus and each other radiated from them.

The hardest part is always saying goodbye. Every word, hug and smile is precious and are moments that I will never forget.

 

Erin Kelly