One of the important questions that faced me as we picked up the pieces that Spring was how I would parent my kids going forward. I had just buried one child, we had lost another a few years back to a miscarriage. So there were many thoughts rolling in my head about losing another child and trying to shelter them from everything.
I can't lie. There was a temptation to pull them close and not let them out of my sight. There was a strong desire to let no one else near them, to believe that I was the only one who could care for them like they needed to be cared for.
My sisters reminded me otherwise. I think it was at different times that they came to me (obviously led by God) and told me that "sheltering" the kids wasn't an option. They were right. I had to be reminded these kids aren't mine in the first place. God has entrusted them to me to care for them but ultimately they are His.
As their father, I can do everything I want to love them, guide them and protect them...but at the end of the day, it is all up to God. He is the one that cares for them most (based on how much I love them, I know He must love them beyond my comprehension). Leaving them in His hands--after I've done all I can do--is the best option for their future.
It was true then, it's still true.
I have to keep repeating that to myself as Harrison gets ready to drive. Have I taught him how to brake properly? How to put on a seat belt? Not to play the radio too loud or to look away from the road for too long? Those questions have replayed in my mind a thousand times this last year as he has worked on his driving.
Now, it's God's turn. I must do with Harrison (and my other three kids) what I did for both of them after the wreck. I must guide them, pray for them and then....turn them loose into the hands of an all-knowing, deeply compassionate God. He will take care of the rest.
Can I just encourage you to do the same with your kids? All of our kids go through junk. It's part of living on this earth. They may not have lost a mom or a brother but their junk is just as deep, just as painful. Maybe they didn't get picked for the team. Maybe their friends made fun of them. Maybe they failed at their first chance at something. Maybe mom or dad walked out a long time ago and they have made that a personal thing. Whatever your child faces, they should never have to face it alone. But it's not you they need. It's Jesus.
Give your children what they need to learn, to grow, to prosper. Then give them to God knowing His desires for them are far greater even than yours. (Ephesians 3:20).