Sufficient Grace

This evening, I’m thinking of the Prodigal son, 
well, really it’s his father.


I came home today and had the most welcomed hug I have ever experienced.  Tears ran down my face as I tried not to be obvious. The person I was hugging doesn’t like tears.


I welcomed my firstborn home from her first visit from college.  It’s been nine weeks, and she resides at a university twelve hours away from home.  It’s been a long nine weeks.


She’s had homesickness, and recently a minor crisis, which caused me to drive 24 hours to spend 26 hours with her.  Not something I would normally do.  Or maybe I would.


I’m sure all mothers have had similar feelings when their children are away for long periods of time.  But if you’ve ever had a prodigal, the return-home-hug is more than just tear-worthy.


The past months have been quite a journey for me as a mother. Really, more like the last several years.  It’s been a journey of coming to the end of myself, being completely helpless, saying, “You have to come through” to the Father.


It’s been a journey of change.  Changes only I can make upon realizing I can’t change anyone else.


It’s been a time of seeking the Lord on levels I didn’t know existed.


You see, when I had my firstborn, I thought I knew most of what would be required in raising a child. 


But the Lord knew better.   He knew what would unfold, and He knew I would come to the end of myself.


For years I parented out of the “I know what’s right, I’m the mom” mentality.  Add to that  birth order, temperaments, and seeds of rebellion in both of us, and you get Difficult times.  Difficult years.


I wish I would have known more grace.


But somewhere along the journey, I cried out to God, and received grace.    When all my human efforts clearly failed, I said, “You, Lord.”  And so did she.  And the closed door between my firstborn and I slowly began to open.


And today I have “I love you mom” posted on my Facebook wall.
I have text messages saying, “Mom, I need to call you later.”
I get a phone call saying, “Mom, can you please come?”


And I receive a hug, where tears shed are the culmination of things I can never put into words.  Of years seeming so distant, and yet so painfully near.


Of a grace known that only comes through pain.


Today, I am thankful for the pain, so I can experience the joy all the more.


Just like the embrace of the father receiving the prodigal son, I experience the grace of a Living God giving new life to the most precious relationship, of parent and child.


Just like the grace He, our Father, gives us.


“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”  2 Co 12:9

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