The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places; Indeed, my heritage is beautiful to me. Psalm 16:6

Thursday, November 29, 2007

And Then There Were Four

We returned from our Thanksgiving in Tucson minus one child. Nicholas returned to CO with his Pa for a week of Camp Pa. "What is Camp Pa?" you ask. Well, it is all about things that make little boys tick (at least mine)...shooting guns, riding ATV's, playing with dogs, staying up late, and watching lots of The History Channel.

Nicholas will spend one week away and then return by airplane all by himself. (GULP) I know he can do it. He is showing such maturity, but, the mommy in me really can't wait for him to be home.

It's kind of an amazing thing watching this young boy-man as he gropes along on the road to manhood. There are times he startles me with his maturity. When he empties the vacuum cleaner canister "because it's full, Mom." Or when he gives away his last piece of gum "because she wanted it more than me." Or going back to open the door for someone at the library who has an arm-full of books.

Then, of course, there are the times when both sneaker-clod feet are planted firmly in childhood, and I wonder if that maturity I thought I saw was merely a mirage on my road to senility. When I look at my life in action and wonder when it was that I signed up to be a zookeeper. When I honestly question if God will give me the grace to do this one more day. If they will ever grow up.

But He does. And they will.

Having Nicholas away has been a great time of reflection for me. What do I want for him? What does he need? Fenelon puts it so succinctly:

The principle object, that we ought incessantly to keep before the eyes of children, is Jesus Christ, the Author and Finisher of our faith, the center of all, and our only hope.

Well, there it is. So simple. Incessantly keep Jesus Christ before his eyes. And the eyes of all of my sweet, precious children. But how? By living my life quietly in the shadow of the cross. By continuously keeping before my own eyes this same Jesus. The Author and Finisher of MY faith. The center of MY all. MY only hope. I need to delight in the things of the Lord. I need to KNOW His Word and meditate upon it day and night. I need to have His joy and contentment. I need to know that He is GOD.

So we grope together, Nicholas and I. Together, meaning at the same time, but down two very different roads. His is the path set out for him by God. As is mine. May the Lord grant us the grace to make it to the end. To finish the race. To reach the finish line in the presence of God who speaks these words, "Well done, good and faithful servant."

For that, truly, is all I want for Him.

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