Our son Jeremy was already married for 3 years and moving on with life.
Our daughter Beth --the "baby" of the family-- had just graduated from UD, gotten married, and moved to Arizona all in one month. To top it off, our surrogate daughter Michelle, who had lived with us for about 3 years, moved to California a couple days after Beth's wedding.
Here I was with the "Empty Nest." I guess I had lived as if there would always be young people in my home to spice up life. Regrets started flooding in: "I should have relished every moment more consciously." " I should have enjoyed it more, rather than taking everything so seriously." And on and on with those thoughts that "eat you alive".
To add to all that, my mom was turning 80 and my mother-in-law, 81. A friend of ours told us that statistically very few of those who enter their 80's live to be 90. That hit me like a ton of bricks. Chances are, we would be burying our moms in the next 10 years. I guess I had taken it for granted that my hero of a mom would only be a phone call away or a day's drive away.
It wasn't that I didn't have other things in my life. I had a "big" life...teaching ESL class, Bible studies, retreats...
But I was grieving! Emotionally, I went into a months-long melancholy.
I started to ask myself, "What really endures in this life?" In my head, I knew the answer, but I needed an answer for my heart. Everything really important to me was drastically changing, and I guess I hadn't seen it coming! Or maybe, being as independent and self-starting as I am, I didn't realize that it would be so hard!
Well, God, in His usual amazing way, started answering my questions and meeting me in my struggles. In my devotions one day, I read:
In ages past You laid the foundation of the earth, and the heavens are the work of Your hands. Even they will perish, but You remain forever; they will wear out like an old clothing. You will change them like a garment, and they will fade away. But You are always the same; Your years never end. The children of Your people will live in security. Their children's children will thrive in Your presence. Psalm 102:25-28 NLT
So what really endures no matter the changes in life? The Everlasting GOD and those who belong to Him from generation to generation.
Let me ask you, dear moms,
When the "dust" of your mothering has settled, and you find yourself with "the Empty Nest"... When you start to lose the heroes of the previous generation, and you find yourself nearing the top of the generational ladder... What will stabilize you for the days ahead? To Whom will you turn...Who will never change and will be there for you no matter the changes?
May you find your comfort and stability in our Faithful, Unchanging God. And may you find your purpose in an ever deepening walk with Him.
FAITHFUL ONE Brian Doerksen
Faithful One, so unchanging Ageless One, You’re my Rock of Peace Lord of all, I depend on You I call out to You, again and again I call out to You, again and again
You are my Rock, in times of trouble You lift me up when I fall down All through the storm Your love is the anchor My hope is in You alone