Another oldie for the archives.
Today is Independence Day. 237 years ago the country you were born into asserted it’s independence from another country.
Today, with all 23 pounds of you sleeping peacefully in my arms, my back aching and my mouth watering for a drink, I find myself pondering this thing we adults call Independence. I wish I could tell you that the place into which you were born treasures connectedness and values community. But the truth, my son, is that Independence is but one of the many idols that reign here in America. And just like any idol, it is oh so tempting.
For 25 years before you came into my life, Satan whispered into your momma’s ears, “Be independent. Dependency is weakness. Make your own rules. Stop for no one. BE YOUR OWN GOD.” I wish I could tell you I wasn’t enticed. But I was. I fell head over heals for His lies. Seriously. And I lost sight of the truth. Only God can possess independence. We humans are entirely dependent on Him for EVERYTHING.
And when God brought you into my life 8 months ago, a tiny being fully dependent on your earthly parents for your every human need, He began a work in my heart. For many parents the dependency of babies is terrifying as it stands in direct opposition to the glories that Satan ascribes to Independence. But thanks be to God, for He is working during your infancy to destroy that idol in my heart along with all its empty promises.
How else could I resist the advice from family, friends, and “professionals” to enroll you in Independence Boot Camp? “He needs to cry alone at night to learn to self-soothe,” “You’re coddling him by holding him all the time,” and “Don’t let him use you as a pacifier!” God is sustaining my heart and reminding me of what’s true. And the truth is that God makes no mistakes. He designed your cry to communicate your needs to me, not to be muffled by a closed door. He designed my arms to hold you, not to be constantly replaced by strollers and jumperoos. He designed my breasts to nourish AND comfort you, not to be withheld because your needs conflict with my love of sleep or personal space. And He designed both you and me to be entirely dependent on Him! I would be so wrong to shove you towards the grips of Independence. Satan will tempt you with that soon enough. Instead I pray that God will use me to show you that dependence on another is not only good, but ultimately necessary. May you one day place your full dependence on Christ.
*Originally written July 4, 2013