When I was in elementary school I had a great group of friends, even still, I was teased. Today we would call it bullying.
God and I have completely worked through this but I wonder how many years of image shame could have been avoided had I been seen as created in the image of God? True, elementary aged children most likely don’t understand this concept. But you see, it starts with us. With the Body of Christ.
How many of us in the Body blatantly or inadvertently shame others simply because they don’t yet believe in Jesus as their Lord and Savior? Raising my hand here because I am a former legalistic queen, that is, until God opened my eyes to His unending grace. What would it look like if believers around the world joined together as one and viewed every single human being as created in His image? The lies of piousness and holier than thou would fade away and be replaced with who God is––Love.
Tether yourself daily to Jesus and He will tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know. (Jeremiah 33:3). Tuck these truths into your heart, write them on 3×5 cards and beautiful scraps of paper, placing them around your house and carry them with you wherever you go, but most importantly, teach them to your children, your children’s children and to every generation you are blessed to be alive for.
Teach them that all humankind is made in the image of God, therefore God loves His entire creation and so ought we.
I thought the first time prepared me. When it happened again a few years later I was caught off-guard. It is happening again in a few short months, actually, I kid myself, it has been happening for more than a few months and I find myself completely unprepared.
Empty nesting. A season filled with innumerable changes, grief and hopefulness. It is important to allow ourselves to grieve through this process. I am still a mom but my role as mom has changed. My days are no longer dictated by drop-off and pick-up, three yearly two-week breaks and a seven week summer vacation. My days are filled with what I have been anticipating and looking forward to the past twelve months. Time. I have nothing BUT time. I have thought about, dreamed about and chomped at the bit for this exact moment. To have days filled with learning more about this gift of writing, spending endless hours traipsing through God’s word and actually writing, but this empty nest thing keeps getting in the way.
I have been expressing to others that I have been in a holding pattern for the last year and I was wrong. Today God revealed to me one of my favorite verses and one of God’s promises – James 5:17. I’m not in a holding pattern, I’m in between the rains. My responsibility is to be patient and God promises to bring the autumn and spring rains.
In between the rains is where new seeds of truth are planted in rich, deep and dense soil waiting and preparing for the new growth that is about to spring forth.
Empty nesting, like so many seasons in life, is a process. As we stay tethered to Jesus by reading and studying His word and through prayer and fellowship with those who have gone before us, we will learn to trust the process.