Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Sheltered

An extra post this week in



Have you ever been swimming in a pool that is packed with noisy kids?  When you duck your head down under the water, all the sounds from the people around you are muted.  It's almost like an escape for a moment from all of that noise, and if you just close your eyes you can almost imagine that you're the only one there.  And then as your head breaks the surface of the water, the noise comes back full-blast, reminding you that you are, indeed, not alone in that pool.

I'm having an experience kind of like that today with my oldest son, only it isn't noise that is bombarding me. 

It's reality. 

The knowledge that I no longer have the ability to shelter and protect him from the outside world.  The idea that he has to face some really tough things and I can't be beside him to help.

Until now, he's been at a relatively small school, and knowing the environment I was pretty confident that he was safe, sheltered even.  And then last year he attended a school that was run by our church, and I knew without a doubt that he was surrounded by Godly teachers and students who had been raised in Godly homes.

This year we chose the "city" school for him based on the academic opportunities it could provide.  I am still confident that this school will be the best place for him educationally.

But last night he told me, "Mom, I'm just so tired of hearing the 'f-word' already."

Did you hear that?  That was the sound of my heart hitting the floor.

I encouraged him to tell the other boys to cut it out and choose different words, but even his dad confirmed that it really wouldn't do any good.  Those boys would continue with their foul language, and my son would more than likely become the target of their derision. 

Sigh.

Until now, our family has been able to live in this "bubble" of a world, surrounded by Christian friends and colleagues, pretty much sheltered from all the bad things that go on "out there."  We listen to Christian music, we don't watch Rated R movies, we focus on using kind words.  But today -- for me, at least -- that bubble burst into a million pieces. 

I knew to expect my son to be exposed to SOME pretty rough things, but today the reality of how MUCH really hit hard.  I broke through the surface of my sheltered life and I was startled by how "loud" of a world I have sent my son off into. 

And I was terrified.

I wanted to drive back to the school, grab him by the arm and bring him back home.  I can home-school him, I thought.  At least then I can still make sure he's taking the hard classes, and he won't have to be around all that bad stuff. 

But in my heart I knew that's not what God was asking me to do.

Please, God, I breathed, keep him safe.  And not just his body, but his mind and his heart, too.

I am praying like crazy for my children today, knowing that each one of them will have to leave our safe little world eventually.  I am more determined than ever to plant God's Word in their hearts and to teach them to love Him with everything they have.   And I am choosing to believe what the Lord spoke in Psalm 91.  There we are promised that we CAN and WILL find shelter and protection in the Lord.  

Heavenly Father, shelter my children.  Be their armor and protection.  Guard their hearts and minds and claim them as your own.  Give them the courage to stand up in Your defense, and make our home a place where they find safety and refuge.  Let our family not be terrified of the world, but bold in our witness.  In You, Lord, let us find the help we need.  Amen.

1 comment:

  1. I have to remind myself Jesus did not come so we would continue to live in fear. Seeing the least little bit of morning news at the gym makes me feel judge-y & then I'm...yuck, as my ten year-old daughter might say. (Total opposite of loving or compassionate, NOT as He would have me.) But what better way for me to remember that people really do need the Lord.

    ReplyDelete

One-sided conversations are no fun. Post a comment and let's talk!