2:00pm August something, 1997 – I stood at the kitchen sink. Sweat poured down my face—or was it tears—as the heat of the dishwater rose up. The house was strangely quiet. My heart ached. I was all alone for the first time in five years.
8:00am August something, 1992 – The school bell rang. Harvest Home Academy and AlphaBYTE Computer Service opened. We began with prayer. One ninth grader, one fourth grader, one inexperienced teacher, and one computer guy were present.
I was no longer simply a stay-at-home wife and mother. The daytime hours were no longer my own. It seemed like no one ever left me alone. My quiet time with the Lord wasn’t as quiet.
The lessons learned by all in those five years were beyond our wildest imaginations, and so worth the sacrifice of time and quietness.
But, then they trickled out the door one at a time all on the same day. First, my husband headed to his new job. Then, our youngest caught the bus for public high school. Finally, with his car loaded, the oldest gave me a hug and drove away to return for his second year of college.
I stood at the sink asking myself, “Why are you crying? You have your house back. You like being alone.” I attempted to wipe my face with my forearm. “Will they be okay? Of course, they will; we equipped them for the world.” (Talking to oneself—the epitome of aloneness.)
Just then, a red finch flew down and perched on the windowsill. To me, it was God’s way of saying, “I heard your cries. They’ll be okay; and so will you. Let ‘em go.”
The bird flew away, my body relaxed, and tears covered my cheeks.
Sometimes we’re called to pour our life out. We feel pulled from every side. We live with intense focus to do everything right. Nevertheless, there’s only so much we can do…and then, it’s over. We have to let go—along with our heart and soul.
Yet, I rejoice with all my heart for sharing those five intense years with my sons and husband. I rejoice over the blessings, which followed the day I let ‘em go.
“But even if I am being poured out as a drink offering upon the sacrifice and service of your faith, I rejoice and share my joy with you all.” Philippians 2:17 nasb