Last week Sunday we dropped Grant off at Bible Camp. As I was talking to the camp "mom" for the week, Grant was getting settled into his cabin and immediately met up with his buddy. Looking across the camp at my son, now shooting hoops with a group of boys, my heart sank. I knew I wouldn't get the good-bye I was hoping for. You know the one I'm talking about. BIG HUG. Kiss on the cheek. The talk. "I love you, have a good week, be sure to wear deoderant and brush your teeth" talk. As much as everything in me wanted to run over and wrap my arms around him and love on him, I didn't.
As we drove away, I wondered if he would suddenly notice we had left and miss the mushy good-bye as much as I did. After all, outside of the transplant, we have never been apart for FIVE days! FIVE DAYS! Yancy assured me that he would be just fine.
The next few days, I found myself praying for Grant often. Whenever I would think about him and wonder what he was doing, I would pray. "God, please don't let him drown in the lake. Or lose an eye playing paintball. God please keep him ON the horse. You know where our mom minds can go! I would also pray, "God, please allow him to make and meet some neat kids and make some lasting friendships. Please speak to Grant this week God and help him to recognize your voice".
As Sunday turned into Monday and then Tuesday, I found myself missing my boy more and more. You name it, I missed it. The "goodnights" and "good mornings". His "hey mom" in that crackling preteen voice, his smelly socks and stinky feet. His flexing in front of the mirror and asking "do you see my abs"? or the countless "hey, what do we have to eat"? I missed everything about him. The good, the bad, all of it, all of him!
I could hardly wait for Friday to come. What a sweet reunion it would be. The story of the prodigal son came to mind. Throwing Grant a party turned into making a yummy desert, but I did think about it!
And then I thought about God.
And I got it. For the first time, I understood as much as I am able, how He feels about me...and you! How much He misses me when I am too busy to take the time to talk to Him. When I "go away" for a day or two or three or four and He doesn't hear my voice. No "good mornings or goodnights". How He longs to hear my voice more than I longed to hear Grants. How "His thoughts for me outnumber the grains of sand". I got it. He loves MY presence!
As we pulled into camp, I saw Grant almost immediately. There he is! That's my boy. A void that I had been feeling all week had been instantly filled. His "hey mom" was now that sweet fragrance that David talks about in the Psalms. He was in my presence and I couldn't have been happier.
I love how God used Bible Camp to not only transform my twelve year old son, but his forty-three year old mom too! I don't want to be away "at camp" in my relationships. I want to be present. Present with my husband, my kids, in my friendships and most importantly present with my God. I want to miss His voice when I feel like I haven't heard it for awhile and I don't want Him to ever miss mine.
"Lord, help me to remember this week and the longing I had to hear Grant's voice and to be in his presence. Thank you for thinking about me constantly and speaking to me always, help me to do the same. I love you". Amen