(Continued from Part 1)
I wish I could say the day got easier after this, but she had two more rounds in store for us before the day was over. I guess God was not through with answering my prayer. The good thing was, each round was shorter and less intense than the one before…which was definitely a progress!
I guess the sandcastle that’s been hardest to smash in all this is the expectation that I should get an A on my report card instantly if I work hard at it. I seek guidance, I pray, I use all my strength to be consistent and do the right thing, yet I see very little (or slow) progress. Granted, it’s only been about two weeks since I began the most recent reset process, but I find myself seeking for that immediate A. As a perfectionist in school, I achieved straight A’s easily and instantly. Unfortunately, it’s not as simple with parenting. I know that Allan and I are doing the right thing…maybe not in everything, but we sure are doing our very best. Yet sometimes, the road gets tougher.
As I was pondering all this, I came across this verse in my daily Bible reading:
Let us then fearlessly and confidently and boldly draw near to the throne of grace (the throne of God’s unmerited favor to us sinners), that we may receive mercy [for our failures] and find grace to help in good time for every need [appropriate help and well-timed help, coming just when we need it].
-Hebrews 4:16 (Amplified Bible)
I am holding on to this promise: I can always find God’s grace to help me, at just the right time. I choose to trust in His word, daily, rather than my circumstances or my own progress report.
Another sweet reminder from God came at church yesterday. Before going to church, Peanut threw a blatant attitude towards me, and she lost a privilege. She screamed the whole way to church. I kept my calm, knowing she feeds off of my emotions. As I parked the car at church and looked into her eyes, I was fighting with all my might to not let the tears that were filling up fall down my face. I was about to enter into my discouragement zone again. After checking the kids in and finding our seats, I sighed a simple prayer: Lord, I can really use some kind of confirmation today, no matter how small. I need to know that this is all worth it. In my heart I believe I am raising a leader. Everything looks messy and tough right now, but I need to know that victory is on its way.
Friends, let me tell you, I have a loving Father who loves to answer my prayers. Sometimes instantly. The title of the sermon was “The Place of Victory.” I’m not kidding. To make a long story short, the message confirmed to me two things that I desperately needed to be reminded of:
1. I am raising a great leader for God – a pillar of faith. (In the sermon, the pastor talked about how Jesus believed this about His brother James for 33 years…and it eventually came true, in a BIG way.)
2. The victory has already been won for me by Jesus on the cross. Through Him, I have full access to all the resources I need to be victorious in every situation. It may not “look” like a victory to the world (just as His death on the cross or His brother’s martyrdom did not look like a victory at the time). I may not see the full effect of each victory on this side of heaven. But that’s OK. I will keep walking this road to victory in faith.
In this current season, raising my strong-willed Peanut is my “cup.” The cup that I sometimes want to pass on, yet not my will but Yours. I will let go of the idea that it should be easy. I will let go of the idea that the finish line is near. I will not fear any drawbacks that will come along the way. I will not seek empty praise from the world or worry about their criticism. Instead, I will keep believing in the vision God has given me and keep walking faithfully in His calling. As I smash my own castles built by sand, I believe that someday I will stand in awe in front of a beautiful castle built on solid ground. I WILL see the harvest of what I’m sowing into my daughter. I will thank God for allowing me to take part in the building process of such magnificent castle, so intricately and wonderfully designed by Him…for His glory.
Oh yes, it will be all worth it.