On Thursday morning I dropped my oldest (almost 16 years old) off at the airport, as he flies out to California where he will be working at a Christian camp this summer. He’ll be close to family, but it’s a long way from his mama’s heart.
Friends at church have checked on me. How are you doing? Truth be told, I’m doing okay. I try not to think about unpleasant things as a matter of habit. I have been eating lots of chocolate, though. The following is what I’m telling myself this week.
Psalm 100 is one of King David’s best poems. It’s dense with meaning and is “sticky”— the ideas stick in your head if you read it slowly.
Make a joyful shout to the Lord, all you lands!
Serve the Lord with gladness;
Come before His presence with singing.
Know that the Lord, He is God;
It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves;
We are His people and the sheep of His pasture.
I love the emphasis of those last two lines, not only for me, but also for my children. It is HE who made our children, and not we ourselves. They are HIS people, and the sheep of HIS pasture. Not only is the Lord my shepherd, but he is shepherd to my children as well. I can rest knowing that the weight of shepherd responsibility does not rest on my shoulders but his. He bears ultimate care and responsibility for them.
Enter into His gates with thanksgiving,Psalm 100
And into His courts with praise.
Be thankful to Him, and bless His name.
For the Lord is good;
His mercy is everlasting,
And His truth endures to all generations.
How thankful I am that God’s truth endures to the next generation. If he has been faithful to me (and he has), he will be faithful for them. There is unending mercy for my children and children’s children.
I still worry as if I could control all the moving parts of their lives. I could mostly do that when they were two, but as they grow older, God has gentle ways of reminding me that he is the shepherd, not me! Yes, I still am tasked with teaching and loving these precious sheep, but how thankful I am for God’s care for them! How wonderful the peace that comes when I remind myself that he carries the weight of their souls, not me! I must leave them in his arms today.
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you.Philippians 4:6-9