Well, here I sit in my living room all alone. The silence is deafening. I distinctly remember six years ago staring into the face of a newborn Andrew and calculating what grade everyone would be in when he went to kindergarten. Clayton would be in the 7th. Jack would be in the 4th. And here we are. It seemed so far away on so many levels. But, I blinked and we're standing in that very moment.
What's even more daunting is that I calculated where we will be just six short years from now ... Clayton will be in college (No longer under our roof ... gulp!), Jack will be 15 (with a driver's permit ... have mercy!), and Andrew will be starting middle school. Well, now I've gotten myself so worked up I can't see the computer screen for the tears in my eyes.
The beginning of a school year always does this to me. I have so many emotions. To me, there's an urgency about the day. I have things I need to/want to tell our guys. So, since I have somewhere to write it, I thought that I'd take the opportunity to do just that. After all, we do have three boys and I can only imagine the looks that I would get if I started crying as I read a letter to them.
Dear Clayton, Jack and Andrew,
Here we stand at the first day of school. I know I tell you this every year, but I really cannot believe that we are here again. My mind is racing with everything that I want to/NEED to tell you. I want so much for you. I want you to be better than me. I don't want you to struggle with the same things I struggle with, but at the same time I know those struggles have (and continue to) made me into the person I am today ... a sinner saved by grace.
And it will be the same for you. (You will not understand this until you are a parent, but nothing hurts my heart more than having to discipline you for the same sin that I struggle with. Nothing makes me want to change like seeing my fleshly habits displayed in your lives.) As I watched you walk out the door this morning a part of my heart left with you. It always will. I will forever be in your corner, cheering you on from the sidelines as you walk your own journey. I will always stand in the gap for you.
I pray that ...
You will be obedient like Abraham
You will be a leader like Moses
You will be a hard worker like Nehemiah
You will always see hope like Joseph
You will know the love of God even when your sins are uncovered like David (And I pray that your sins will be uncovered. Yes, I do.)
You will get back up when life knocks you down like Elijah
You will have friends to stand with you and beside you like Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.
You will be mature beyond your years like the disciples. (Did you know most of them were teenagers when they were following Jesus?)
You will point people to Jesus like Andrew. (Andrew in the Bible.)
You will have passion like Peter
You will stand firm on your faith in God like Daniel
You will love people like your dad
Above all, you will pattern everything in your life after Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith.
Psalm 63:3 says, "My lips will glorify you because your faithful love is better than life." I want you to know this. I want you to live this with every breath that you take. My heart skips a beat when I think about all that is in store for you. No one, this side of eternity, is cheering louder for you than me and your dad. Honestly, if you were not my boys I'd be envious of the mom who called you her own.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on Chaos 2 Peace. It has been republished here with permission.