If I have learned one thing this past year and a half it's this....I don't have control over anything other than my response to this life. When my kids were young I thought I had control because I could, for the most part, make them behave how I wanted them to....notice I said "for the most part." As they got older I thought I had control because I could control where they went and who they were with. As the teen years came around, I still thought I had control because I was engaged with them and knew where they were (supposedly) and who (supposedly) they were with. But the reality was and still is this....I never had control. Never. Ever.
Even though I have come to terms with this reality...I still struggle with trying to control. As parents we think we know what needs to change in our kids lives. It might be their attitude, how they treat others, how "Christian" they are, etc. We think we know what they need to hear....we have such great suggestions on pretty much any subject. But the truth is...I don't know my kid's heart like God knows their heart. I don't love them like God loves them. I don't know what they need in the depths of their soul. Only He knows. And only He can do a work in them that truly lasts.
The other day I was praying over my kids and all of a sudden I heard this come out of my mouth..."Lord, help me to stay within the boundaries you have put in place for my parenting. Help me not to move into Your territory in their lives." God must have known I needed to ask for this....cause I didn't think that before I prayed it...it just came out of my heart as I was praying. I realized I do this alot...I move into His territory...His area...what He is responsible for in their lives..and I try to do His job. I AM LOUSY AT HIS JOB! HE IS AMAZING AT HIS JOB!
If you have kids of any age and you struggle with feeling the need to control...I encourage you to ask God for a clear understanding of your territory verses His territory. I am learning to get out of the way, shut my mouth, and pray like crazy. I have seen God do some amazing work in the lives of my kids. He is changing them in ways I could never change them. He is transforming them into His likeness and drawing them into relationship with Him. My kids aren't perfect, I don't want them to be..what I want is for them to have their own relationship with God and be sensitive to the Holy Spirit and listen and obey Him. I want them to be mighty warriors for the Kingdom of God. This is all I want...more than anything on this earth...this is what I want.