My baby just turned thirteen. I now have a house full of teenagers! Well, there are only two of them, but it feels full! How did this happen? Sabrina has always been such a little peanut, so dainty with kissable cheeks. And now she’s a powerful teenage ballerina with bandages on her toes and mascara on her lashes.
Sabrie possesses grit and spirited charm. I’ve never had to wonder about how she feels on a matter. And now, she articulates her feelings with great clarity and conviction. Thirteen feels different. At least it does to her mother. I want to cling to my little girl.
Though her usual mode of operation is shyness, it is fun to watch Sabrina come out of her shell. At her birthday supper, she demonstrated recent dance combinations she’d learned from a ballet intensive and had the entire room filled with laughter. My mother kept remarking that she was seeing my grandmother’s spunk in Sabrie. I was internally marveling at her likeness to myself. Her hambone was in full operation, and I loved it.
Lately, I have referred to being a part of the sandwich generation, simultaneously raising these two girls while also assisting my elderly parents. Patrick and I have landed here because we waited ten years to start our family. It was a good idea at the time, and I wouldn’t change a thing, of course, but here we are. Every day I am learning over and over again one important truth: I am not in control.
I know that I know that I know who is in control. I’ve never doubted God’s Word.
Whatever the LORD pleases, He does,
In heaven and on earth, in the seas and in all the ocean depths.
The lot is cast into the lap,
But its every decision is from the LORD. (Proverbs 16:33)
The king’s heart is like channels of water in the hand of the LORD
He turns it wherever He pleases. (Proverbs 21:1)
Will the clay say to the potter, “What are you doing?” (Isaiah 45:9)
Who is there who speaks and it comes to pass,
Unless the Lord has commanded it?
Is it not from the mouth of the Most High
That both adversity and good proceed? (Lamentations 3:37–38)
Obviously, there is only One in charge. When I am resting in Christ’s sovereignty, I experience relief from the pressure of each challenge. I can feel the squeeze of life without bearing its weight. I can wrestle with the sorrow of hardship or change without being pinned by its burden. I know who is in charge and it ain’t me! His control means freedom, peace, and rest.
It is much easier to bow before Christ’s throne than to attempt to rule from my self-made, puny throne that holds no power. The result of my surrender is that I no longer greedily cling to my treasured loved ones, but rather, I give them back to the One who put them in my life. When I place them in His hands, my joy in them is even more complete.
These teenage years are very special for my daughters, and so are these elderly ones for my parents. Finding myself somewhere in the middle, I plan to soak up all of them. And I will do so while remembering there is only One who is in charge, and it ain’t me.
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