What I'm learning about letting go
I’ll never forget August 28th 1989 – the day my daughter Katie was born. I had been a Christian for barely a year, and here I was holding our second child, - and first daughter -in my arms. Katie is definitely a daddy’s girl, and saying ‘I’m proud of her’ falls way short of my true feelings. When people ask who my favorite child is, my response is always ‘all of them’, as every child holds a different place in my heart. I have always known that Katie would be in full time ministry, and we have always seen her tender heart, forgiving spirit, and strong leadership.
I will never forget the feeling, as I held her in my arms for the first time, that one day I would be giving her away. I knew a day would come when another man would come into her life, a man she would fall in love with, a young man that one day I would give her too.
For as many weddings as I’ve done, I’m going to say up front that this will be the toughest. My only wish and prayer for Katie for the last 22 years was that she would marry someone who loved Jesus Christ. God has more than abundantly answered that prayer. Jordan (her fiancé and my soon to be son in law) loves God, loves other people, and I love him.
Walking your daughter down the aisle and giving her away to another man is something that I have both looked forward to, and yet also been in denial about. This is that week. TOMORROW IS THAT DAY.
As I’m sitting here at our new church home, I’m watching all the incredible volunteers help to put together the reception and I am so blessed and so thankful for everyone who has helped. The people who have helped us has been so overwhelming. THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH.
This morning when I woke, I was reminded of another father who was asked to give his son away. But even more than give his son away, he was asked to sacrifice his son.
The story of Abraham and Isaac in Genesis 22 has always been one of the most difficult stories for me to understand. Why would God give a son to Abraham only to ask him to give him back? Talk about a defining moment. Although this is a completely different scenario, some of the emotions can still be the same, because giving something up that you love so much is never easy.
In my case, I couldn’t imagine a better husband for Katie, but I also have tears in my eyes as I type these words. One of the biggest lessons from the story of Abraham, is that at the point God asked him to give his son up, he had walked with God for 40 years. The amount of history we have with God is directly connected to our ability to trust God.
I want to share some of the things I am learning about letting go...
Firstly - enjoy every moment you can with your children. These are the only days that you have. Don’t let life squeeze out relationships. It seems the every day pressures can steal the Only God moments. Be intentional with your kids.
Secondly – in what area of your life are you having a hard time letting go? Its only in letting go, and putting something in the hands of God, - whether it’s a financial situation, a relationship, or a change in life, - that you will see God step in. Let God in. Be invitational with God.
Thirdly – how is your history with God? The longer you walk with Him, the more you will trust Him. Where God guides us He will always provide for us. God guided Abraham, and God provided for Abraham. It’s always time for surrender. I think sometimes we love being in control more than we love God. Let God guide. Let him provide.
I’m looking forward to this new journey in my life and the life of my family. I pray that God’s love will continue to consume you.