These girls. I want to throw my arms around them and keep everything and everyone from them. But they are not MINE, and I promise you, they are not YOURS. They belong to God–The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it. (Psalm 24:1 NIV)
Oh girls. My girls. No. God’s girls. Let no one call you “theirs.” You are God’s. Where are you when I’m not there? Who is watching over you? Can any person care for you as much as your mom? What roads will you take, girls? Will you remember the right choices? I have had to loosen my grip so many times, especially in broken family situations, and it is right to do that…but so, so, so hard.
I pray every day that you never make some of the choices I made and that you never have to learn some of these painful lessons I’m learning. But God doesn’t exist to help make our lives turn out the way WE want them to turn out; He exists to make sure WE turn out the way HE wants us to. You might make some wrong choices, but I know you will remember what’s right–Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it. (Proverbs 22:6 NIV)
Each pregnancy from the earliest day I knew about each of you, I would sit with your dad and read about you. My little raisin, my little kidney bean…your tiny poppy seed heart, webbed toes, translucent skin. I hope I am a comfortable home for you.
You were formed and planned out of love. Never believe one word or one thought that would suggest any other idea. So much love. I wondered if you will be a son or a daughter. Of course a daughter…and a daughter and a daughter and a daughter. I hope she likes me. Oh God, what if she doesn’t like me.
Perfect miracles. How can anyone not admire the design and precision and awesomeness of life? We put lots of thought into each name we chose. I built you nests in the chimneys of my heart. Only God and I truly know those details–For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. (Psalm 139:13 NIV)
I can never stop caring. I remember so many little details about each of you growing up. I never knew I would share the duties of mothering you. I never wanted that. But I know you are loved by many, and I’ve learned to adjust. When you become a mother, you will understand this deeper–Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne? (Isaiah 49:15 NIV)
God will always be with you. When you were little, you would run to me with any issue and fall on me. I would still be here for you any time you ever need me. Don’t ever be afraid to come to me. But more than that, lean on God; he will never fail you–As a mother comforts her child, so will I comfort you… (Isaiah 66:13 NIV)
My son, keep your father’s command and do not forsake your mother’s teaching. Bind them always on your heart; fasten them around your neck. When you walk, they will guide you; when you sleep, they will watch over you; when you awake, they will speak to you. (Proverbs 6:20-22 NIV)
4 sisters, Photo by Nick Bolin (my talented nephew)