I can’t believe it! For the first time in weeks all 4 of my children are napping AT THE SAME TIME!! Every day I work towards this goal and every day at least one pair of large brown eyes refuses to close or pops open when the other 3 sets gently succumb to the wonder of sleep. God knew I needed a few moments to be still and think and write since it’s been a…hmmm…searching for the perfect word here…a day! Burned fingers, spilled dogfood, bread baking, homemade mac and cheese, baby-wearing, dinosaur roars, sisters screaming, beds not made, cleaned out fridge, unfolded laundry (oh yeah! I forgot about that!), business-building ideas zipping through my mind, preschool planning simmering in my mind, music on from two different sources, HUGE box that somehow ends up in every room I’m in! Ha! I love my life!
And in the midst of this cacophony of life a picture keeps coming to my mind. It’s of my son in pale green overalls studying a globe. He wants to know the name of every country on that sphere; he wants to know why it turns; he wants to know how we can “get there” (wherever his finger happens to be touching). And my heart falls and lifts at the same moment: how I want to protect him and his siblings from the sinister motives of evil lurking in our midst. To shield them from all that will taint their innocence, lure their hearts away from what is good and pure, deceive their minds with lies and harm their bodies. And how I want this young boy to love people! To ache when he sees the sorrow in our midst. To yearn to share with them that he serves a risen Savior! To strive to be a surrendered vessel in His Master’s scarred hands. One day this young boy will be a man and he will step out into the world. Will he be ready?
It’s a question that never leaves my heart. There are times when I watch him and his siblings at play, at mealtime, or sleeping peacefully at night and I try to envision them in 10 or 15 years. It’s hard to do. It’s hard to see past the reminders to go potty, or the kisses on owies or how easily fussiness dissipates when I sit down to read them a story. I know a time will come when today will be yesterday and I’ll be saying, “Remember when you sucked your thumb?” or “Remember when you would play with your cars and trucks for hours and you built a Costco out of blocks?” or “Remember when we played pirates together?” In the midst of these busy moments of care-giving, how do I prepare my little boys and girls to reach the world without it consuming their identities and changing who they intrinsically are?
Home. This is the place where they can safely become the men and women God has designed them to be. This is where character is molded and refined in relationship with their family members and intentional encounters with the outside world. This is where they learn what it means to serve and sacrifice because you love someone. This is where they know they are loved for who they are and not what they do. This is where they can come with all of their questions and fears, mistakes and milestones, triumphs and tragedies and know that their emotions will be shared by all who are a part of this family. This place called home will hold a significant place in their hearts and be a constant reminder of their beginning, their purpose, and their destination. My prayer is that wherever they go and with whomever they meet, they’ll be talking about home.
Do you have a placed called home?
[Author’s note: In the time it took me to write this post, a certain baby boy ended up in my lap]
Shelby, I am overwhelmed with emotion at your description of home. Just beautiful, my friend.