Thursday, May 28, 2009

Always Be Ready

We have really enjoyed having our daughter, Ashlyn, home the last ten days; but unfortunately, all good things must come to an end. She left early this morning to return to SC, where she will be working full time at a Christian pediatrician's office. I am struggling with her departure into this new season of life, even though I am comforted to know that she has a good job in a great working environment, will be living at the Bible school where she attended, and will be involved in the ministry of a solid, Bible-based church. She will be surrounded by many incredible friends who are also seeking the Lord. I have to admit that this is all more than we can offer her here. But, it is still a challenge to my mother's heart to watch her turn this page of her life and start a new chapter. I know that in the chapters that lay ahead, I will be less and less of a main character, as the story line revolves around her and the life God has planned for her. This is all normal and right, but no less painful for those left behind, especially dedicated mothers and adoring little sisters. It was hard to watch Bethany tell her good-bye without letting some tears slip from my eyes.

Last night, Ashlyn and I went to a coffee shop to "chill" and spend our last night together talking without the many interruptions that are an unavoidable part of living in a large family.

It is obvious from the picture below that Ashlyn needed to unwind!!! ;)

Seriously, we enjoyed the time together before today's inevitable separation. While sipping our coffees and chatting, an elderly man unexpectedly struck up a conversation with us, which he turned to spiritual matters. He was obviously concerned about death, and his eternal destiny. Ashlyn confidently put her Bible training to good use in answering his questions, and correcting his faulty thinking about God, forgiveness from sin, and eternal salvation. Finally, he left, promising to go home and read the book of 1 John, as she had directed him.

I love this picture I snapped of Ashlyn as she patiently listened to this dear man, who was uncertain of his eternal destiny.

I was reminded of the following verse: "But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear." -- 1 Peter 3:15


kristilea said...

I enjoyed the pictures! I'm glad you two got a moment together. I can't imagine the day I have to let my babies go. I'll be praying for you!

Rebecca's Refining said...

That was a sweet post and I really enjoyed it! You and Ashlyn were able to make some sweet memories together! Think of this as God's training ground for future things to come: what is the saying, "A son is a son until he takes a wife, but a daughter is a daughter for life." :) love you! We just have to remember that our children belong to God! I'll be there one day myself and then you can encourage me!

Jules said...

Oh Elizabeth, how well I understand this stage in your life. I msut admit that I'm always amazed at those parents that say they couldn't wait for their kids to leave home. If I could have kept mine home for another year or two or ten I would've done so, but I know they now have to live their own lives and that I have to let them go. You've done a great job and this is just another step in your parenting role.

And Happy Birthday to Taylor! It has been a busy month for you.

Michelle (She Looketh Well) said...

Hi Elizabeth,
Okay, this made me cry! It is so hard, this Mama thing! Isn't it? Good thing God didn't really let us know just how much of our hearts this would cost! I might have turned tail and ran!

pinkcamojeep said...

Wow. I know it must be hard to watch them go. I'm not there yet, but it won't be long, I'm sure. I'll keep you both in my prayers

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