The past 7 weeks have been unlike any we have experienced. The world has been placed in a time-out and life as we once knew it has been altered, temporarily. To make good use of our time at home, we have worked hard at transforming our home’s exterior. The changes have been wonderful. Old, ratty bushes were removed and replaced with new ones that will hopefully grow into beautiful landscaping. The areas around the trees have been cleaned up and mulch has been added. A garden was planted. And my favorite…shutters. We made these ourselves and absolutely love them. The compliments we are receiving give us great joy. We almost don’t recognize our house. But with all of these changes, I am often thinking of something else that needs a transformation. Something that is longer lasting. Something that is eternal. Our inner lives. Our spirits. As much as I love the new look we have given to our home, I know that even this is temporary. It only lasts for as long as this world is in existence. Our spirits are eternal. And the relationships we are cultivating are eternal.
I recently observed one of my friends and her son. He is 16 now and has grown into quite a guy. She has done an amazing job raising him and should be very proud of the man he is becoming. This has caused me to take a close look at my parenting and for a moment I began to slip in feelings of comparison and jealousy. I have not done as good a job as she has in parenting. Oh how I want to be the shining example of a Christ-led life, but I fall short so often. At times I feel I have failed my kids and messed them up for life. While this may hold some truth, it is not entirely true. They do have a firm grasp of what it means to be a Christian. But there are so many gaps that need to be filled in. So how do I handle this? Where do I go from here?
My first thought is that God is in control. He hasn’t failed or fallen short. He is just as much on the throne as He has always been. He knows our weaknesses and is more than able to fill in those gaps. He has come through before, so nothing less should be expected. Turning to Him in prayer is the best place to start. Confessing sin and weakness, and then trusting Him to work these things out. I remember the numerous times He has come through for us. Turning seemingly impossible situations around for good. Doing what only He can. Our faith has grown in these times and I am sure stronger faith will come out of this as well.