Mothers Have to Grow Up Too

A couple of months ago, I had to pick out eight pictures that represented the last 17 years of my daughter’s life. The yearbook staff at her high school kept sending me reminders of the deadline for the senior ad. So I did what I didn’t want to do—I pulled out photo boxes, inserted photo CD’s into the computer and I sorted through a lifetime of memories.

There among the piles of “maybe,” “for sure” and “no way, she’ll kill me,” I remembered some of the advice I received as a young mother. Well, more like warnings than advice:  
Just wait, she’s cute right now, but when’s she starts crawling she’s going to be a handful. You will never find her in the same place you left her and her hands will touch everything especially if you say “no”.
She’s so precious, but wait until she’s two, she’s not gonna be cute anymore. 
Has she said “no” to you yet? Oh, it’s coming. You won’t know what to do, especially since she likes to please you.
What? She likes to obey? Of course she does, she’s ten! What does she know? She’s in the angelic stage. Wait until she’s a teenager.
Yes, those moments came, but so did discipline and consequences. We knew we had to deal with a different hard with every stage of development. God helped too! He had mercy on us and entrusted us with three kids who desired to please Him. Praise the Lord!
But these kids—my precious babies—no longer look like little kids. The hard grew into my impossibility. Discipline and consequences now belong to God. And I have to let them fly to wherever God leads them.
Right now I see a world that wants to destroy the relationship between God and His children and I wonder, What’s going to happen to my kids? Many times I assume the powers of evil have the high ground. Only I’m wrong! 
So here’s some advice—given to me by some mentors and friends—to help us when fear grips our hearts:
Do not be afraid. Jesus commands it for a reason. Remember, God loves them more than we can possibly do. 
God does some of His finest work in the midst of our worst crises. He is in the business of redemption and as the Good Shepherd, He will pursue His lost sheep.
They may seem lost on the outside, but God knows their heart and He knows where they’re headed. Trust Him!
Remember God’s discipline is designed to correct. Allow consequences to run their course. He changes hearts, we don’t.
Keep praying for them. Don’t stop asking God to reveal Himself to them. Trust in His timing.
Above all, love and extend grace. Can’t go wrong with loving unconditionally and showering them with grace. God did it with us and it worked!
God chose me to mother my kids. All of it proved good and wonderful. These memories, all of these wonderful moments, continue to show me God’s goodness and faithfulness. So I will press on and do what I don’t want to do—hand it all over to Him and remember He will fulfill his purpose in the lives of His children (Romans 8:28), and with that, I have great expectations.

Raquel Wroten (MAMC, Dallas Theological Seminary) was born in McAllen, Texas but has lived in the Dallas/Fort Worth area most of her life. Raised by a single mother, Raquel grew up knowing the meaning of diversity, creativity, and chaos through her four brothers and three sisters. The greatest gift she ever received came from her mother who taught her that living as a believer doesn’t mean perfection, it means grace. Raquel met her husband Rick at a church retreat in Oklahoma on a cold November weekend. They dated for a year and got married in June 1992. A couple of years later, Rick graduated with his ThM, and they welcomed Joshua. . .then Abby. . .and surprise, it’s Anna! Intermixing their cultures, the Wrotens have established a variety of traditions along with interesting combinations of food. Raquel believes that ministry begins at home so she finds new ways of serving those she calls her own. Raquel serves as editor of DTS Magazine and enjoys writing (in English, Spanish and Spanglish), cooking, coffee, education and serving up a feast for her friends and family.