At this stage, our role as “consultant” shifts to an “on call” role of parenting, but it’s still active parenting. There’s no occasion to become passive in family relationships. Passivity produces apathetic kiddos. Even anger can show up as “fruit” of passivity. The world has plenty of passive, apathetic, cynical, angry people. Challenge yourself to be active, passionate, praying, “on call” parents.
Three Weddings in Four Years
In 2012, (our oldest daughter) Katie and Sean married! This was our first wedding. Our first baby to be given in marriage. A marriage of holiness and covenant love. Sean was hand-picked by the Father to love our Katie. A mighty man of God! I love watching how tender Sean is with Katie and their baby girls. Sweetest ever!
In 2013, (our son and middle child) Will and Anna married! We couldn’t have dreamed up a more perfect match for Will. Thanks be to God for this beautiful, godly, adorable, delightful, young lady. Not only is she God’s perfect pick for Will but the perfect mommy to their little guy Michael – and soon to be here – Charlie!
Then, in September 2016, we had our 3rd wedding in 4 years (whew!), when our baby of babies, Emory Grace, wed Mr. Chandler Wall! Emory has always had a playful spirit, a quick laugh, and thirst for variety. Chandler checks all those boxes and more! You should see the way he makes her laugh – a-dorable. With this final wedding, Mike and I officially became 100% full-time empty-nesters – or rather, consultants “on call” – a time to consult and pray!
A Soul-Defining Mom Moment
The night of Will and Anna’s wedding – after a weekend of wonderful wedding bliss, Mike and I turned off the lights and collapsed into bed.
In the dark, it hit me, that “mom moment.” I turned toward Mike and said with a crackling voice… you know… words that are said with tears and sniffles and soon become gulps of air? The hard to catch your breath kind of words? Well, here they came. A gush of tears. I could hardly speak. The dialogue went something like this.
Mike: Sweetie, what’s wrong?
Karen: It’s what they say.
Mike: What do they say? Who are they anyway?
Karen: They say, when a daughter marries she’ll never leave you, but when a son marries, well… they must… leave… you. (insert more tears)
Now, for the Bible students out there, I know, I know, the Word says a man must leave and cleave to his wife. I am all for it! Yes, God’s Word is true, and He knows what He’s doing! But does cleave mean to cut off? Gone forever? There he goes – the little boy who stole my heart? Is it goodbye and see you later, Mom?
Mike: That’s ridiculous. Not Will. Will is never gonna leave you. Not that kind of leaving. You are emotional from a long weekend and many years of loving our boy. You gave it your all. You did it right. You will be fine.
In just a few short minutes, Mike was out, like the lights. Sound asleep; peacefully sleeping. Not me. I was still in my “mom moment” – thinking and praying.
Somehow, Mike knew you could have both – a son wise enough to Biblically cleave to his new wife and a son who would continue to love his “starter” family. Haha! It’s a transition. A transfer of “loves.” A good thing; a great thing!
A Path in the Mountains
As I lay there, pillow wet with tears, the Lord gave me a word picture. It was a scene in my mind’s eye. A narrow path cut through a gorgeous mountain range, something like the Rocky Mountains. The terrain had a few twists and turns, rocky at times, but much of the path was relatively easy to run. The path was beautiful! Absolutely beautiful.
It was peaceful, serene, and quiet. The sun streaming through the leaves like gold touching emerald jewels. I imagined myself running along this path, beginning to recognize this was the race God prepared for me. It was the race of motherhood. A race of perfect joy and delight! My race of endurance. Twenty-plus years mothering Will (and Katie and Emory).
Jesus did exactly as He promised. He taught me how to mother those three precious people! He ran with me.
Then – suddenly – the path ended. A canyon was in front of me. The path was no more. And there was no way to cross.
“That’s it? It’s over?” I said to myself, “how can it be?”
It felt so abrupt. Sudden. So final.
Then, I looked up and across the large ravine another path was cut before me. It was as if Jesus was saying “I have another path for you. Another race that’s cut for you. Run this race now; the one set before you.”