Becoming Less

The decision has been made to move to Texas.  A lease has been signed on a rental, and we are in the process of getting our house ready to sell.  When we finished the paperwork last night, I felt like I had been punched in the stomach as reality hit.  This is actually going to happen.  The Lord has given us so much confirmation that we are to go that to not move would be disobedience.  Whether it’s for one year or ten years, we don’t know.  We are excited because we’re certain He is leading, but it won’t be easy.

The other morning I was led to John 3:30:  “He must become greater; I must become less.”  Of course, in this passage John the Baptist is talking about Jesus, but it applies to our lives as well.  As we continue walking with God, the Holy Spirit gradually conforms us to the image of His Son.  Sanctification is a process of dying to self, our fleshly nature, and becoming more like Christ.  In the natural, this is often a painful process, but in Christ it ultimately produces inexpressible joy.  Oswald Chambers speaks of this as attending our own white funeral“:

No one experiences complete sanctification without going through a white funeral-the burial of the old life. If there has never been this crucial moment of change through death, sanctification will never be more than an elusive dream. There must be a “white funeral,” a death with only one resurrection-a resurrection into the life of Jesus Christ. Nothing can defeat a life like this. It has oneness with God for only one purpose— to be a witness for Him. (My Utmost for His Highest, January 15.)

The Spirit showed me this principle also applies to us as parents.  I see my children with their own families established, adults now carrying adult responsibilities.  They don’t need me in the same way anymore, and those precious little ones are theirs.  I raised my children as well as I could, though certainly not perfectly.  And I loved every minute of it.  The fact that I am close to them and they welcome me into their lives is a mother’s reward.  But Mom isn’t in first place in their lives now, nor second place, maybe not even third.  And that is healthy, the way it should be.

To be called by the Lord to spend the rest of my life for His purposes is a gift.  I know that He is calling me unto himself, and I know that whatever God chooses to do through Mark and me will impact our family for Christ for generations.  God says in Exodus 20:6 that he will show love to a thousand generations of those who love Him and keep His commandments.  Mark and I are called, with all our weaknesses and imperfections.  We are humbled and grateful.  We will be obedient.

So I cheer them on, my beautiful family.  I will pray for them, encourage and support them, and be a part of their lives forever.  There will be many, many visits and phone calls and face-time.  But I let go of my need to be connected in the same way as when they were children and teenagers.  I let go of needing them to need me, my fear that if I move I will somehow lose them.  And I praise God that He has given me a legacy in three wonderful children, an amazing daughter-in-law and sons-in-law, and five (so far) grandchildren.

Lord Jesus, you must always become greater in my life, and I must become less.  I welcome that.  But I also acknowledge that I have become less in the lives of my children, as it should be.  White funerals are painful, but they are necessary as we pass from one stage of life to another.  What has been cannot be recaptured.  What will be is in your hands.  I trust you, Lord, and I entrust my children to you, the Faithful One.  Thank you for the blessing of family, and thank you for this new adventure with my husband.  I know it will be wonderful and that you will work it for good.  In your precious name, amen..

 

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