the love of a parent

becoming a parent has given rise to all sorts of thoughts and wonderings in my mind and heart.  this next season is going to be chock full of newness for us.  sure, zach and i both have quite a bit of experience with kids, but parenting is NOT the same thing as an eternal babysitting job.  and we’ve never had any experience with kids of our own.  that changes things, right?  my latest random curiosity has been “will i still love my kids when they are unloveable??  when they are making me crazy?  when they are sinning against me and others?  when they are just being downright naughty and bratty?”  because frankly, i don’t really love other people’s kids very much when they are brats.  my head tells me that it will be different when they are MY kids, but i don’t know it because i’ve never felt and experienced it.

as i thought about a parent’s love for their child(ren), i was reminded of how this love doesn’t end when they graduate, or move out, or get married.  both my own parents and zach’s parents have recently blessed us with a beautiful display of just how far their love continues to go…

this move has been complicated, not only because i’m 6 months pregnant, but it’s an interstate move, 95% of our belongings are going into storage, juggling the timing of getting out of our apartment and zach’s last day at work in Cali, not to mention just the added difficulty of living on the 2nd story and moving furniture down the stairs (or out the window, as was the case with the couches haha)!  but our parents have come to our rescue and made this move SO amazingly less difficult.

my parents flew out to california, stayed in a hotel, helped us pack up the last few items, helped load the moving truck… and THEN drove the moving truck back to arizona and got a crew to unload all our stuff into the storage unit and/or their house.  (not to mention clearing out 2 bedrooms in their own house to make room for me and zach to move in with them!) 

and zach’s parents – after being displaced for 3 months while completing an extensive addition/remodel on the house, after JUST getting their home back together and in order, they throw open their doors and welcome us into their home without a moment’s hesitation, to live with them for a week, sharing their space (and eating their food), before we hit the road for arizona.

our parents were incredibly loving all during our childhood and the way they raised us.  there was never any doubt of that.  but it has been remarkable to see how that love continues and morphs and develops as we have gotten older and become adults and soon to be parents ourselves.  we have been particularly amazed at how both [sets] of our parents have been so loving and supportive even when God has led us to move away from them.  zach and i both know that each move away from one set of parents or the other is/was difficult and definitely not what they necessarily wanted.  but they love us enough to want God’s perfect will for their children more than their own preferences and desires. 

i hope to love my children as fiercely, deeply, unconditionally, sacrificially and faithfully as our parents have loved – and still love! – us. 

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One thought on “the love of a parent

  1. You will love your kids that much. I know it. I cracked up at your line that “parenting is NOT the same thing as an eternal babysitting job.” That’s true on so many levels. It’s way better than eternal babysitting in that they are yours, you are shaping their entire world (rather pinch-hitting), and you owe them love by duty and by God’s design. Babysitting doesn’t come close to being that profound. On the other hand, raising children is a 1000x harder than any babysitting job, even an eternal one, because you are constantly learning about this little person, your husband in light of the new person, plus your flesh and its desires are being severely hampered. Parenting is the most painful thing I’ve done and the most wonderful, which are conflicting ideas. You will love your children all the time…not necessarily with a warm and fuzzy impulse but always with a sense of duty toward them and a fierce desire to steward their lives rightly before God even though they are frustrating. You are going to be a wonderful mother. I cannot wait to hear your thoughts as you walk through life with Jack!

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