My children are not my own. I realise that now.
Recently my son caught a stomach bug and because he dehydrated so quickly he was admitted to hospital for 24hours. It was Easter Friday and even though I knew it was not life-threatening because we had caught it in ample time, I was afraid.
There is always the temptation to live in fear for our children… but they are not ours to fear for. That evening as I sat in church singing about the cross I felt God saying to me that I should lay my son’s body at the foot of the cross. The vivid image of my three year old son’s tiny body, curled up at the cross made me want to weep: in sadness and in joy. God made me realise that this boy is a gift but although he is in my earthly care, that he ultimately belongs to God. He was bought with a price long before he was even born.
There are things I cannot protect my children from. It’s a terrifying revelation for any parent but we have One who can protect them. We have to entrust our children’s lives, safety, health and character in the hands of the only person who can do it all. The One who created them.
My cousin died a few years ago. He was young, not yet 21. And I watched as his parents mourned for him and clung to God – they did not mourn like those who have no hope because they knew their son had gone home to be with his Father.
The worst could happen. I could lose my children or my husband… but they are not mine… and they are not lost.
My son (and daughter and husband) is not here for me. He is here for God. He is here to glorify God through his life, like we all are, and his destiny is in God’s hands, not mine. If the worst should happen (which I pray never will), God will be the same. And if the best should happen (which I pray it does), God will be the same. He is worthy of the same praise, regardless of our circumstance.
My children are on loan to me. Precious gifts that have taught me more about God than any sermon ever has. That is their purpose (the purpose of all of us), to reveal the God that bought them with his blood.
1 Corinthians 6:20 “You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honour God with your bodies.”