Immediately I had a visual of my precious daughter being taken from me. I immediately said to God “no, that is not what I meant” but realized that I wanted to be broken but only in my terms, my definition. So as I started to run away from God in that moment, I felt Him pull me back and cause me to sit in the tension of desiring my heart to be completely broken by my sin and separation from him and yet wanting to hold on tightly to the gifts he has given me. I felt that nudge that I have heard others speak of, the one that says “if I take every earthly valuable thing from you, will you still call me God?” I still wanted to say “of course, just please not that one”. I did not run but I don’t think I totally surrendered either.
How do you surrender that one idol that you think you could not live without? I hate to think of my daughter as an idol but if I am going to hold on so tightly, she must be. I can remember prior to knowing Jesus thinking that if anything ever happened to my daughter I would just kill myself. I was completely bound in fear that something would happen to her. I still have some fears but they are not as gripping as before and although the thought of losing her makes me want to vomit, I know I could not take my life because it belongs to God.
As I started the writing above I thought the outcome was headed in a certain direction. As it has taken several weeks to unfold I can see how God has used the time to reveal something much bigger to me.
God has shown me in a very profound way that the visual of losing my daughter was not a physical loss but a spiritual loss; losing her heart. I could see how my daughter could turn away from me in her heart or far worse, turn away from God.
As I was contemplating what it looked like before to entrust my daughter completely to God, I was stuck in the need to protect her yet the sovereignty of God. For example, we would not let a young child cross a busy intersection alone just because God is sovereign. So as I think about that and how much I try to control my daughter’s well being unrealistically versus healthily, God has reminded me that I actually have a much bigger battle to consider and that is the battle for her heart.
I can do many things to protect her physical well being. I can also instruct her heart in the ways of the Lord, but ultimately I cannot do anything to control her heart. I cannot decide for her what to turn to. I cannot force her to choose good from evil nor can I force her to choose God over the things of this world. This is quite humbling. My self-sufficiency as a parent is shattered when it comes to my daughter’s heart. I am at a loss and incapable of doing anything other than turning to Christ and placing her heart at his feet and pleading before him that he would protect it and guide her. That he would grab hold of it and her love for Him would be stronger than any worldly pull on her heart.
The only control I have in this is lifting my precious daughter up in prayer constantly. Praying that God would also reveal to me how best to love and parent my daughter as she figures out who she is and desires to be. It is with a broken heart and utter dependence on Him that I enter into His presence on behalf of my daughter and humbly submit my agenda and motivations for the sake of my daughter’s heart.