I have a very simple, unshakeable faith. It never dawned on me such a thing was a gift, until I married Jonesy. Faith is something he fights for. It is not simple for him and he dedicates himself to holding onto it, at times with white knuckles and gritting teeth.
As our children have met their adulthoods, I was fully prepared for them to move into that transitional period where they believed exactly as we do, because we taught them so, into their own ideas of who God is and who they are in relationship to Him. I was prepared for them to see things in a unique way; to differ in thought and interpretation than us. For I, too, walked uniquely in my faith than my parents, as I suppose every person of faith does. I think this a vital part of Spiritual well-being to “work out your own salvation with reverence and trembling hearts.”
What I was not prepared for was how that transition for my children would be such a mighty transition for me as well. It has been a clear lens in my own faith, or better stated, lack of. There is nothing more important to me than my children being in communion with their Creator. I believe that relationship is the very touchstone for all their well-being in every other part of their life. As a parent, those things which are most important to you, can also become the thing you want to be able to control. The very idea that I am in control, whether through sheer determination or responsibility I can not bare, in itself, demonstrates my own misguided faith. As much as it pains me, these beautiful souls are not mine. They belong fully to themselves and ultimately the God I hope they seek to serve. I think to not acknowledge that is detrimental to them and to me.
As they reach a new chapter in their walk, so must I. I have to let them go in every way to become fully themselves in order to keep them. That is an extreme act of faith for this control- loving Momma. Yet, my faith requires me to remember the promises of Him who I believe—nothing can pluck them from His hand, if they seek Him, they will find him, that He is with them always. And as my mind clears from the numbing difficulty of realizing my place in all this, I see more clearly how they are teaching me great things about who He is. They, in their unique individuality of gifts and experiences, are revealing Him to me in ways, my own gifts and experiences would never be able to uncover. That is a beautiful thing.
The exchange of grace between parents and newly adult children will largely require a greater portion to the parents. At least this is the case for the Jones children. As I grow along with them, I fully believe in who they are and in the One with whom they are building their own relationship. But, I don’t think it is weakness in either to request they text me that they are safe in their travels. If it is, then Lord, I believe, forgive my unbelief.