“Mild he lays his glory by,
born that man no more may die.”
The boys have been making a fire every night in the school room, falling asleep to its crackles. When Christmas break began, they rearranged the couches and made a sleeping area in front of the fire place. My oldest even moved out there for a few nights around Christmas. All five of them used to sleep together downstairs on Christmas Eve and in the nights leading up to Christmas.
I don’t spend as much time with my kids as I used to, at least not directly. There have been many times throughout this time period where I have wondered whether or not this is God preparing my family to go on without me. All of the adjusting and getting used to me being unable to operate was just his way of lessening the blow. The Lord has no qualms about taking home young people.
And if that is is his will, then there’s nothing I can do about it. Earlier in the month we heard that a family friend from one of our former home churches had lost her battle with cancer and gone to be with the Lord. We had known her from the period of her life while she was still single. She was a vibrant, joyful person who was also a talented piano player and teacher. After continuing teaching in her earlier married years, she gave up teaching to be home full-time with her children.
Besides the shock and sadness of yet another person dying, I felt an odd sense of contempt toward the idea of a woman giving up her talents in order to dedicate her life to her kids. Forgive me as these are not righteous thoughts. Who were these kids and what made them so special? What makes anyone that deserving to have another person love them that much, that deeply?
They always talked about how Satan hates motherhood. The devil this. The devil that. The devil hates marriages. The devil hates families. If there was one way to rile me up, all you had to do was tell me that the devil didn’t like something, and there was my life’s direction and purpose. In some strange way the devil becomes the taskmaster, determining what I will and will not do.
There is a Christ-love in mothering, I cannot deny this. And I suppose anytime the Lord’s lovingkindness and tender workings are involved, the devil isn’t going to appreciate it much. There is a battle that exists between the children of God and the father of lies, but it is a battle the devil has already lost, a victory our Lord generously shares with us, his co-heirs: “For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has dominion over him.”