Wednesday, October 27, 2010


As a parent, I am reminded of my own inadequacies daily.  My weakness in scheduling, in planning ahead, in keeping my patience, in having to go to the bathroom occasionally.  Thankfully, I don't think my kids notice all that much.  They are to busy figuring out how great they are - which is completely normal for their age.  But as time goes on, I know they will realize their mommy is painfully imperfect.  I remember going through that stage myself.  I remember the frustration I had as my parents (who are still my role models) fell from the pedestals on which I had placed them, not through any particular failure of their own but simply through the sharpening of my own awareness.  I became more aware of my own failures then, too, which obviously compounded the problem. 

I came to terms with it gradually.  I accepted that there wasn't some moment and age when I would no longer struggle with these things.  I learned that everything done imperfectly was not just through a decision of my own, but part of who I was as an imperfect human being in need of God's grace in my life.  But I still remember when I grasped the beauty of having this commonality with my parents.

It was the summer after my freshman year at college.  I had decided to join the cross-country team at my college - which is another story for another time.  My Dad is a chaplain in the National Guard and he would run with me from time to time as I (who had never really "run" before) attempted to get into shape.  So on a cool summer evening, we went running. 

The mountain valley where we lived was darkening and the stars were displayed magnificently in the clear sky.  We were about a mile from home on our return lap when we both involuntarily stopped to stare at our surroundings.  The moon wasn't out, but the starlight was enough to illuminate the great shadows of the surrounding peaks.  A meteor shot through the air as we watched while the whistle of the nighthawks filled our ears.  Dad sighed and then spoke, "Hannah, all of this, even us, it is for His glory.  That's why we are here - to glorify Him."  All I could say in reply was "yes". I looked at my Dad and saw the starlight glint off his eyes.  We both stood there in awe, worshiping & praying to our same God and King.  I remember how very small I felt and yet so significant.  To stand next to my father, my Brother in Christ, and glorify our same Creator.  It was beautiful. 

Even the Apostle Paul says, "The good I seek to do, I do not do."  But there lies the beauty.  Through Christ's sacrifice on the cross we are given the grace we desperately need, and through that alone can anything good come from us.  As we realize our inadequacies and we fall at God's throne, grace is poured upon us and through that we, as His children can bring Him glory through our hopeless and fallen lives.  It's a beautiful reality and each that claims Christ's name is unified through it.

Someday my babies will grow up.  Someday they will be hurt by my inadequacy, the inadequacy of others and even their own.  But I pray that when those times come (for there will be many) they will seek the forgiveness and healing of their Heavenly Father.  They will seek to live by the Spirit gifted to them.  They will realize the grace that is needed because we are so, so imperfect.

And they will join their parents as brothers and sisters in the journey to bring God glory.  
A journey that isn't finished yet.

1 comment:

whenpigsfly said...

You articulated that so well Hannah!! I think we all come to thatpoint with our parents whether we acknowledge it or not, and our children with US whether we want to acknowledge that either. Knowing that our children have figured out our mortality is a sting AND a relief: a funny two-pronged milestone. Thanks for this post!!