Thursday, September 27, 2012

Another Teen....I'm not scared!

Today we start the journey of another teenager in the Holcombe house! This makes the 7th teen that has graced my nerves and my heart. I can't begin to thank God enough for walking this road with me. Without Him all of this would be meaningless! As I watch them go from being a teen to an adult I rest in knowing He has always carried me when I didn't have the answers and rejoiced with me when the victories came. Raising teens in today's world has not been the easiest thing I've done, but it's been the most rewarding journey I will ever take! Yes...I have another teen! I'm not scared!

Many ask me "How have I managed to raise this many teens and survived?" I honestly can't take the credit for this. It's been a team effort and a willing heart. Team effort as in my support team....Husband parents, friends, pastors(Church Family). But really the answer to this question is "Jesus!" He is the reason I get up in the morning and go to bed at night. He has carried me when I just couldn't get it together. When the mom guilt had me so bound that I never thought seeing them make it out of the teen years would be possible. Will the rest of this journey be easy?...Probably not! But I'm not walking it alone! One day at a time. We tackle each event and heart issue as it happens. If I look at the BIG picture I get very overwhelmed. But learning to see their hearts and know God is the one leading them where they need to go is my saving grace. I just need to learn to step aside and allow Him complete control.

I think watching and letting my kids make mistakes is probably the hardest thing I have had to do as a parent. But isn't it in those mistakes that we learn? I know I have made my fair share of them and continue to everyday. It's a natural thing to want to keep them from making those same mistakes. We know the pain from them...don't we? Yes...there are times we need to step in and take over.  Much like when they were little and learning to walk....we walk beside them sheltering them with our arms to keep them from falling. The joy we feel when they do it on their own. But the smile on their face when they realize they finally figured it out. Priceless! I want that same joy as I watch them make good choices. I want that same joy when I see them say "YES" and surrender their lives to the Lord. I want that same joy and peace when I finally figure out I can drop my arms and allow Jesus to be the one who shelter's them with a greater protection than I could ever hope to give.

There will always be insanity when a teenager is present. Loving them through the attitudes and choices they make will be what brings back that sweet bundle of joy that you had the honor of teaching how to walk. Only then will not be the one protecting them with your arms.
Hang in there dear fellow parents. Although right now you may feel you are being pecked to death by chickens. Joy does come in the morning....the sun will rise and the sanity will return! Yours and theirs! Only this time God is the one teaching them how to walk!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

"But How God?" ...The answer!

How do you go from this....

and this........His childhood friends!

to this?........Same 3 boys plus younger brother!

My question ..."But How God?!"  is being answered! That deposit...$1000.00 by October 1st....has been made! All I can say is miracle!!!!!!!!!!!!!  His next step is airfare...approx.$1200.00. Student funds won't be released until school starts. Which is the end of October. So as we wait with anticipation on the God who has ordained all of this, we seek His wisdom for preparing for this really big adventure. I'm not sure why God waited until now to call him to Israel. All I know is when God calls... you go. Never asking why or how! Trust is a hard thing when our earthly eyes see all the obstacles.

These boys have been friends for a very long time. I have had the joy of watching each of them grow to be the young men that they have become. One is married and a dad now. Two are engaged to be married next year. One that is about to leave all that he knows to follow a desire that he has had since childhood. God has ordained all of their steps whether it's here in the U.S or many miles across the world to a country that is in the midst of a soon to be war.

And He chose Justin to follow Him to that very country. To follow that dream that He placed on Justin's heart many years ago! To trust Him with every detail of that calling.

From this.....

    To this......
I can't wait to see this same smile when we welcome him home again!

Jeremiah 29:11

11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.