Dishwater Surrender

Posted on: January 11, 2011 Written by
Dishwater Surrender
Photography by: gemenacom from iStock          

I have always firmly believed that when our Father calls a family He has a plan for the entire family in that call.  Nevertheless, I still do not like to watch my children struggle.  One morning recently I woke up groggy after not sleeping well.  I had been thinking about my son’s struggle in his school situation, one for which there just does not seem to be a good alternative right now.  The fact that my oldest daughter will be leaving and going far away to university in less than a year was sinking in as well.  While I do think there are many positives in the life of a Third Culture Kid, I was grieving about some of the ways our lifestyle was impacting our kids as well.

I boiled the electric kettle for hot water to do the morning dishes while a monologue ran inside my head:  I am willing to sacrifice a lot to do what we do—and I already have, but I will NOT sacrifice my children.  Doing what is best for them is a priority.  After all, they have been given to us to raise.  I will NOT sacrifice them.  It would not be right!

I have had variations of this conversation with myself many times before, but this time a Still Small Voice firmly interrupted my thoughts, …But what if I asked you to?  I felt like I had been punched in the gut, and I wept into the dishwater.

At bedtime the night before, our seven-year-old had read to me the story of Abraham’s willingness to sacrifice Isaac.  In that moment at my kitchen sink I remembered that my Father had tested Abraham’s willingness to do the very thing I was saying I would not do.

I live in a city surrounded by literal, physical idols.  While I know that there are idols of a different sort in my passport culture as well, seeing them where I live drives home the point of how “anti” my Father they are, and what a bondage they are to those who pay homage to them.  I do not want idols in my life.

Am I making idols of my children?  The thought had not occurred to me before!

After a while I wiped my face with a sudsy hand and sorted my heart out with my Father.  I may have to keep watching my son flounder in his school situation for now.  I will have to see my daughter, whom I am not quite ready to let go, leave and learn to fly.  While I am not glorifying sacrifice for sacrifice’s sake, when He calls I will put Him first.  I will do what He asks and trust that He will “provide the ram” in their lives.

©2014 Thrive



About the author

Heather P. serves in India. “A recent book that I've learned a lot from: When Helping Hurts by Corbetta and Fikkert.”

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