In a few weeks I will be the mother of an adult child, a boy who wants to be a man but isn't really prepared for the harsh reality of living as an adult in the twenty-first century. We have poured all our love into him, taught him the truths of scripture, sat up many late nights letting him pour his heart out about one thing or another, but how can we know when enough is enough?
The road of a parent is not easy. We are faced with the rebellion of youth, battle the demons of disrespect and disobedience, and at times feel like we are laid in the dust with tread marks upon our backs. As hard as we try to parent our children with love and grace, doing the best we can and never compromising the truth no matter how many fiery darts the enemy hurls at our families, there is no guaranty that we will come out of the fire without being burned. We find ourselves battle-scarred and weary, but we pray that all we've done and all the prayers we have prayed are enough for Truth to win out in the end.
The time comes to let go of that which we cannot control and to pray that God will be faithful to complete in our children, and in us, the good work which He began (Philippians 1:6) the day they were born. We must pray and hope that our prayers and example will ring loudly enough in the ears of our children that they will learn for themselves how wide and deep and high is the love of God (Ephesians 3:18) and eventually surrender their hearts to His lordship.
Knowing that God loves our children more than we could ever possibly love them, and that he hears the fervent prayer of parents who have done their best, we trust in the One who said, "My grace is sufficient (enough) for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness" (2 Corinthians 12:9).
If there is an area of your life that is out-of-control, some challenge you cannot seem to overcome, surrender it to God; pray for His good, pleasing, and perfect will (Romans 12:2); and know that He is working all things together for your good because He loves you and has called You according to His purpose (Romans 8:28). Even when it's hard -- especially when it's hard -- give thanks in all circumstances (1 Thessalonians 5:18) knowing that God Himself is your Peace (Ephesians 2:14).
If your out-of-control challenge involves a loved one who is struggling to find his way, recall the day that God pulled you from the slimy pit of your own sin and set your feet upon the Rock (Psalm 40:2) and know that He loves your beloved enough to do the same when it is time. "The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you (and your loved one), not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance" (2 Peter 3:9).