Wednesday, March 19, 2014

A Mother's Letter To God

Dear God,

He's far from perfect.  He frustrates me and pushes my buttons. (He seems to know all the right ones.) Some days we clash and collide more than we love and listen.  There are days he says and does things that make me question, "How on earth did this child come from my very womb?"  I admit, there are moments I don't even like him. Yet, he's my son.  A part of me.  A gift from You.  And I can't help but  love him with that wild and senseless motherly love.  You give me windows into his heart.  And I know that it is good.  For I see glimpses of You and Your work in moments and places I wouldn't have expected to find them.  I thank You for this.

I never knew motherhood could be so hard.  Blood, sweat, tears hard.  It's gritty work.  One must be armed with courage and resolve on this brutal battleground.  There are days I want to throw in the towel, and I question if I am doing anything right.  Or anything good.  He wears ADHD out in the open for all to see and impulsivity could be his middle name.  Yet, I know there's not a label, diagnosis or mistake that will ever define him.  For he has been lavished with love and called Yours.  His name forever tattooed on the palm of Your righteous hand.  Lord, please let that identity take root in the deepest recesses of his heart.

He often feels like a big disappointment. I know this because he's told me so...on more than one occasion.  And it breaks my heart.  He frustrates even himself with the choices he makes.  Often in good intent to be liked and to find laughter and approval in others...but always at his own expense.  I think of Paul and his words, "I do not understand what I do.  For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate to do." (Romans 7:15).  I think my boy can relate to that.  He doesn't get away with much of anything.  Seems to be a target under a microscope that is studying "all things wrong."  I believe these things will build humility and integrity into his character as he's had to learn young to bend into this process.  Lord, please help him to seek approval and find worth in You only.  Let Your voice and Your opinion drown out all other voices and get buried down deep into the fiber of his bones.  That he will know and believe that he is special, chosen and loved.  Not for what he does or doesn't do, but for the simple fact that He is Yours.

Father, before he drew his first breath You marked all the days of his life.  Not even his worst will surprise you. You see into the depths of that young tender heart with eyes of mercy and compassion.  And You remind me to do the same.  That underneath that mucky sand and shell there is a treasure of pearl and promise and potential.  You use the hard and the struggle to layer up and build a polished jewel within.  You pry open the outer cases of our hearts and brush away the things that blemish and hide.  To reveal in time a heart refined and more resembling of Your Son.

I'm thankful for the individuals You've placed in our lives who love and accept him through his quirks and mistakes.  The ones who give second chances. And third and fourth ones too.  Those who see beyond the outside and know You are doing a good work on the inside too, as spoken and promised in Philippians 1:6.  I'm grateful for the parents who have raised kids similar in nature and offer wisdom, insight, hope, and direction to us when needed.  And for all of the ones who haven't given up on him.  Or our family.

I thank You for making me his mommy.  For a mother is able to take in those flaws and mistakes and love beyond them.  You give her vision to see so much more.  My snuggler.  My sensitive one.  I look at my son and see he's still just a boy who is trying to find his way in this great big world.  I see a leader.  Lord, let him grow to lead others to You.  I see a boy who is full of energy and life.  Lord, let his life be abundantly found in You.  I see a boy who is witty and wise.  Lord, may he grow in wisdom and stature and in favor with You.  I pray that He will learn to always choose what is good and noble.  That He will walk in the path of righteousness and never turn from it.

I pray You give him a burning passion for You and Your Word above all other things.  That He will seek, love, serve, and trust You all the days of His life.  That You will be his greatest passion, joy and desire.  Build in him a faith that far surpasses mine or his daddy's.  A faith as deep as the Hebrew Greats.  Use him in big ways to impact others for the sake of Your kingdom.  Shape and mold him into a man after Your own heart.

Before heading to the hospital this last time around, Brayden was questioning so much..."Why do I have to go through this?...I'm tired of being sick...I just wish it would stop...When will it stop Mama?...I just want an answer...Why is this so hard?"  I had no answers.  I don't understand it all myself.  I never stop praying for his healing.   But I put my hands on his shoulders, looked him square in the eye, and with confidence I told him that he is a mighty warrior.  That You are making him a conqueror and a fearless overcomer.  That You will bring good out of this and will make him stronger because of it.  You don't waste pain and heartache.  You are building in him a heart of compassion so that he can help others some day. With all that is within me Lord, I beg you to make good of this.  Use this illness for Your glory.  I am believing You to come through on Your Romans 8:28 promise here.  And grant me the days and the years to see this promise fulfilled.

When other boys look back on a childhood that was colored in memories of frog catching, tree climbing, and baseball games, I worry his will be stained in memories of emergency rooms, hospital beds and IV needles.  In those moments his heart grows heavy with questioning, help him to see You in it all and to trust Your purposes.

Maybe my boy was right...sometimes Your plans do seem "weird."  For it seems weird and wrong to watch just one child leave for school in the morning, knowing the other is lying in a hospital bed and should be climbing those bus stairs with her.  I'll listen to the advice my son gave four years ago when he was the one writing a letter to You at the tender age of 6, before any of this even began.  That "Your plans work"...even if they seem "weird."  This "weird" and hard to understand plan of Yours must have purpose and meaning.  There is good and glory to be brought out of it all.  I claim it now over Brayden and our family.

Ever since he was just a wee little boy and I would tuck him into bed at night, I would often tell him that out of all the little boys in the world, if I had to choose just one to be mine, I would always choose him.  That even if there were a million boys lined up before me, I would scan that crowd and find him.  He would and will be the only one that I would ever want.  Because he is my favorite, and he is mine.  And as much as I claim him as my own, I understand he is really Yours...entrusted to me on this short side of eternity.  I need Your wisdom and strength to train him up in Your ways.

I know in the days to come I am going to need Your strength in other ways too.  The medical bills will role in like a tsunami wave.  We haven't even received the ones from his last hospitalization two short months ago.  The house is disastrous and every room bears witness to this storm.  My bed hasn't been made in days; the sheets may get up and walk to the washing machine on their own.  I am neck-deep in laundry and bills still waiting to be paid.  My girls are a day or two short on their baths and have lived off of hot lunch and breakfast dinners all week.  The pantry's a bit bare and waits to be replenished. Help me to breathe in Your grace as I tackle my "to-do's."

And when the storm calms and the waves no longer rush in...when we try to go back to normal and pick life up where we last left it...when stillness covers the outside, let it calm what lies within and underneath those troubled waters.  For I know the after-moments all too well...the ruins of messy, tossed about emotions still looking for a place to settle.  When I am overwhelmed, overworked, and overtired, help me to rise above.

It's late.  I'm utterly exhausted.  I know You hear my prayer tonight as it echoes in my heart and shoots straight up to heaven.  My son lies miles away in a hospital room with his daddy as I lie in bed tonight sandwiched between my girls of 8 and 4.  One nestled snuggly right into the nook of my arm; she can't get close enough.  I can feel her breath against my skin.   The other, who prefers her space and distance, reaches over to feel me near and soon gives way to the sleep that seduces. I just received an endearing text from my husband and we exchange words that encourage and build. Tomorrow may be discharge day and I press into this possibility with hope.  I think, write, untangle and spill over keys and lighted screen until I can't hold my eyelids open any longer.  In this very moment I will surrender to your gift of sleep.  For my heart is full.  Joy is brimming.  I will fall into deep slumber tonight rich in the things that matter in this life. And maybe, dream in colors of glory.

Faithfully Yours,

Tonight I write this letter about a son who was birthed from my womb and birthed from God's heart. It was inspired by this video that resurfaced in my memory after I found myself talking to God, sharing my heart, and praying these things over him during these last few days he has been hospitalized. This video was made 4 years ago when Brayden was just 6 years old.  I've found comfort and inspiration in his words, not realizing how greatly they would reach and impact me so many years later.

Love, Brayden from Macomb Christian Church on Vimeo.

1 comment:

  1. Saw on FB that he is out of the hospital, is that right? So glad for him, you, and your whole family. This post was clearly written from the deep emotions generated by painful experiences. Hope and pray his health will continue to improve. God bless.