Do you ever have those days where you truly feel like if God had a favourite it would be you? Well, today is one of those days for me.
Our oldest son, Benji, leaves for college next Friday. I felt like I had been doing pretty well with the whole idea until this afternoon...in the grocery store...over a gallon of milk. Yes, a gallon of milk made a lump form in my throat and tears well up in my eyes. A gallon of milk dated August 28. Seems innocent enough, right? It does if you're just a person buying milk for whom a date 5 days before August 28 means nothing. For me, it meant by the time that milk expired Benji will have been at college for 5 whole days.
I promise I'm really not a helicopter parent who hovers around my kids and doesn't want them to have a full and exciting life filled with lots of adventure apart from me. I am, however, a Mama who loves her babies deeply and is keenly aware that life as we know it is about to change. Those big size 15 feet won't be clumping around the house anymore. The little kids won't start squealing with excitement because his truck just thumped it's way into the driveway. I won't get to fix him runny eggs and bacon for breakfast or have him shake me to let me know he's home at night. I know...I know...he'll be home to visit for holidays and such...but it won't be the same and I am sad.
I decided to go sit in my sanctuary, otherwise known as my back porch. It's my "secret place" and sitting there is always special for me. As soon as I walked out to the porch Papa had a surprise for me...
Yes, Papa loves me so much that, even though we had no rain at all, He put a rainbow there to remind me how much He cares!!!
With a slightly more contented sigh, I decided to sit down and pick up my copy of Jesus Calling that I keep on the table on my back porch because I like to read out there. I sensed that rather than flipping to today's date, August 12, I was supposed to turn to August 23...the day we move Benji to college. I began to read and before I got more than a few words in I felt myself begin to shake for this is what it said...
Can you believe it? Isn't that just like Him? He had just given me a big rainbow-wrapped hug and now He was getting down to business. He was reminding me that I could either have each finger pried off my boy one-at-a-time when it came time to drive away or...I could release him with an open hand knowing that the safe embrace I think that I provide is a mere shadow of what He can offer. Gulp!
Lord, Thank You that You love me the way that You do and thank You for making me feel like I am Your very favourite girl tonight! Thank You for loving Benji even more than my finite mind can comprehend and thank You for the mind-blowing ways you encouraged my heart tonight. I love my boy more than life itself, but I know You love Him that much more!