Yesterday my husband and I attended a wedding. Taylor, my friend's son, was getting married. In the weeks leading up to this day Leanne, his mom, and I have had many conversations. She has shared the joy of wedding prep and the stress of it too.
But the topic that's been on my heart lately revolves around the idea of letting go. Awhile back Leanne was talking about the struggle she has with that and the thought of no longer being the "number 1 girl" in her son's life. Now my little guy is only 6, but the thought creates some emotions.
In our talks last week, I could sense Leanne was at peace with the letting go that lied ahead. She knew Amy was the girl God had for Taylor and their meeting and new life together was all part of God's plan. Though there was peace, as the day that will forever be their anniversary unfolded there was emotion as well.
And really it was primarily joy! What a privilege it is to see two young people come together and commit to living thier lives as one to glorify God. Leanne was letting go of her son, but at the same time gaining a daughter. As the pastor preached, the music was sung and the wedding party spoke the Lord's name was lifted up. Real joy!
After the wedding Leanne told me she had shared a poem I'd written with Taylor and everyone at the rehearsal supper. I was surprised when she said there wasn't a dry eye in the room, but again weddings are a time for emotion. And I suppose when the Mother of the groom says this,
Years ago, I held you
in my arms and thought,
"You are mine."
But with each first step
and new lesson learned,
I've had to let go.
Through the years
you've grown and you've changed,
but I've learned too.
God has shown me
though I am your mother,
you are still His son.
Letting go is not always easy -
I've wondered if you were ready
and been hurt when you were setback.
But as I reflect,
I know there was
a reason for it all.
The ups and the downs,
the good and the bad
have made you who you are.
Now as you prepare to say, "I do"
I will do what I've done -
let go and let God.
...tears are a possibility.
Last night as the evening was coming to an end, Leanne and I shared another conversation. The day they'd worked a year to create was coming to an end and all the hours of preparation was worth it. It had been beautiful.
But as I looked ahead and she reflected back, the work didn't just begin when Taylor gave Amy the ring and asked the question. It was years ago when the two of them were little and Leanne had preschoolers and infants just like me.
Parenting isn't easy, there are times it's very hard. The challenges are on-going and the difficult jobs don't end when the days in diapers do, but when the day comes to let them go the effort will be worth the reward.
As we said our good-byes I handed Leanne a note for the mother of the groom. I reminded her this was not only a wonderful day of celebration for Taylor and Amy, but also for her as well. This is what she raised her son for - her little boy was now a man, the child who'd at times ran wild in her house was now head of his home, and the son she'd shared her faith with now had one of his one.
I don't want to put words in God's mouth, but I think he whispered to Leanne, "Well done good and faithful servant." And as I look ahead, someday I pray I will hear the same.