I was sitting at my desk working this morning, when all of the sudden I felt a lump in my stomach.
These three boys leave tomorrow for the whole summer. Not on vacation, but on a sacrificial trip that will most likely change their hearts and alter their perspective for the rest of their lives. And as excited as I am for them, my heart hurts momentarily when it remembers that they’ll be on their own for two months.
I had someone ask me today how I can possibly let my boys travel to Africa and Ecuador without Chris or I there to supervise. Here’s what I said:
My kids live in a bubble. While I am so very thankful for the incredibly blessed life we have been given, I also know that struggles and challenges bring a strength and depth of character that are hard to develop otherwise. I want our kids to feel uncomfortable sometimes. I want them to be in situations that make them realize they can’t control everything. I want my kids to see that the lives they live aren’t “normal” for the rest of the world…a pantry filled with food, clean filtered water, a washing machine, access to an amazing education, two parents who love them, Christmas morning with an abundance of gifts, and almost anything they could ever need at their fingertips.
I’m going to be honest: I have moments where I’m kind of terrified. But I learned early on in parenting that these kids are merely on loan to us…they’re going to grow up and move out and live on their own at some point. We only have a small portion of their lives to help guide them and expose them to unique experiences that will hopefully develop their character in beneficial ways. One of my biggest prayers is that those experiences will encourage them to be generous, honorable lights to the world instead of societal leeches who give nothing or worse, take everything from those around them.
So, in less than 24 hours, these boys (young men?? They’ll always be my little boys…) will be leaving our nest for two months. I eagerly ask for your prayers for their safety, health, and fortitude as they dig wells to provide water for remote villages, build a school, and connect on a deep human level with people on the other side of the world. Oh, and maybe pray for my heart as their mommy. 😊