My phone buzzed with another late-night text. What would be today’s concern? Was it good news or bad news; hard to tell without looking but at this hour, how could it be good?
Reporting the current calamity to my husband, I prepare for the rescue. He looks with kind concern and reminds me that I am our children’s sounding board not a superhero. They are looking for someone to listen to them, it is no longer my job to fix it. With a sigh, I agree. I’d like to say I move on but their situation, often not as bad as my mind makes it, continues to play out in my head.
This scenario plays out in many homes across the country. Our adult children and elderly parents are only a text away. Tethered to us through technology, we get more information than we need.
Disappointment, failure, and rejection may send them to you for encouragement. When this happens, I want to solve it for them. I don’t want my dear one to be hurt in any way. However, these trials also develop character and test integrity. In a microwave society, sometimes we need to let the ones we love marinate in their current life circumstance. God is working on them, pray for the Holy Spirit to work on them without interference.
Even when living with us, our adult relatives need autonomy to make their own decisions, even bad ones. When we interfere or ignore their boundaries we will offend and injure the relationship.
Learn to accept your loved one for who they are now. In an environment of unconditional love, you will continue to build your relationship with them. Grab the good moments when you can and treasure them as a beautiful gift.
My heart breaks for those of you who watch your loved one wrestle with destructive behavior. This fight starts on our knees until they are worn out and it feels like not one more tear can be shed. Even then, we continue to cry out for the deliverance of that child of God. I’m so sorry. I pray that your prodigal finds their way home to your waiting arms.
Growth in trust and faith is a product of times on our knees. In a sandwich generation, between adult children and elderly parents, it is imperative to remember they are out of our control. Yes, there are times when we need to step in, but often, we do so too soon and without permission.
Remember Jesus loves them more than we do. How can that be true? I just know that God so loved that He gave His only Son to die for us so we could live (John 3:16). He is not asking us to do the same in return. May God protect all our wayward family members as they figure out this dance we call adulthood.
Dear Jesus – I trust you with my loved ones. It can be so hard to let them go. Thank You for loving them and watching over them. I ask that You draw them close to You and that they would see You. Help me to accept them for who they are and love them unconditionally just as You do. In Your Name I pray, AMEN