Having a baby? No...I'm not. I am, however, getting one. A dear friend of mine has entrusted me with her baby for a few days every month. When I considered serving her in this way it felt like a no brainer. She's my friend, I enjoy having children in my home (especially babies) and she needed help. As soon as I told her that I would help I hung up the phone and was almost stricken with fear. What if something happens? What if he gets hurt, or sick or sad or...whatever crazy thing may happen while under my care? My friend didn't think she could have children, this little guy is a pretty big deal. I was scared to death! Then I heard this voice, "Ali, the other ones you keep aren't yours either." I may have blogged about this before, but it's on my mind now that I have his things here and we're ready for the morning.
How do I treat someone else's children? Am I more patient? More fun? More kind? Am I quick to listen to their very long stories out of kindness rather than duty? I forget very quickly that the children that I care for daily are not my "belongings." They have also been entrusted into my care for a short time. God has not given these children to me because I deserve them or because I asked for them. He gave them to me that I might rear them in the fear and admonition of the Lord. That maybe, just maybe they will live for Him. It's a huge task. Why don't I tremble with fear? Why don't I consider that their Father would expect me to parent them according to His rules. I'm not going to take this little guy and just do what I want or what I think is best. I'm going to do as his mother asks. She is the parent. Just as God is the parent of my children. His word goes...the buck stops with Him...Glory and Honor and Praise belong to Him.
I hope that as I struggle with all of His energy that works powerfully in me that I would not be a "good" parent, but rather a vessel that is poured out on a daily basis to love and serve the most amazing children I've ever known...remembering that not one of them belongs to me.