Sometimes, as mothers, we tend to hold on tightly to our children because we love them so much. We think we can keep them safe and control the world around them, but that really isn’t within our power. We want to hold on tightly to our children, but what if our letting go is key to God working in their lives?
When faced with the reality of my adult son putting himself in harmful situations, I felt helpless and afraid. I imagined the terrible things that might happen to him and was consumed with fear. Some of the fears became reality. Trying everything I could to get him to choose another path, I worried and cried, pleaded and manipulated, but nothing brought change.
I picked up and carried the burden daily, until someone noticed and let me into her story. She had been an alcoholic, and no matter how much her mother loved her, it wasn’t enough to bring change. Things were dire for seven years, until one night her mother felt the Lord speak to her. He said -
"Let her go and give her to Me."
In that moment, through tears, she surrendered her daughter to Jesus. Within the week my friend realized that she was at the end of herself, and couldn’t do it anymore. As she stood in her kitchen, consumed with alcohol, she gave it all to God. She finally let go and let Him in. Her life was forever changed.
Out of that change, she she spoke truth to me. She told me to let my son go – to open my hands and release him to God. As I responded the best I could, the Lord began to reveal that I was not enough to save him. I could never be enough, say enough, or do enough to fill the need that he has for a Savior.
As parents, we teach and help, but only Jesus rescues and heals. ~Chad Kincer
What a powerful realization, and also, what release. When we're carrying a burden on behalf of our child, we need to be willing to release our son or daughter to the One who made them. We need to allow God to do the work that only He can do. He has entrusted us to parent, to love and guide, but not to save.
God gave me a vision of hope as I was crying and praying for my son during worship:
My son was treading water – striving, in deep waters. He believed he could manage all by himself, yet I could see he would soon tire, because life without Christ is strenuous. I felt such a weight and worry for my child who is now a man. I realized he needed a Savior. Beside my son was a boat, and inside the boat was Jesus. He was standing, closely watching and waiting for the second that my son reached for him. He stood ready to pull him in. In faith, I saw him get into the boat and fall at the feet of Jesus. In that moment, Jesus had him. As the Lord bent down and took my son in His arms, I knew that he would be okay.
Parents, take heart. God, our Father, has sent a Savior. His name is Jesus and in His name we find strength, wisdom, and the power to accomplish all that He sets before us. Open your hands and release your child to the One who loves him most; let go so that your child can receive.