Some moments in life are so precious, so connected to our souls that time cannot erase them. They are both nostalgic and present all in one thought; indelible memories of relationships that take the form of a vow, a birth, a bond, a parting. Remembering them can fill us with joy or touch us with tears, because they spring from the same deep root ~ that of love.
I was captured by just such a moment while watching a tender exchange between a mother and her young child. The gentleness sent me back to another time and another place when I cradled my toddler close to my heart and sang quietly to him. Recalling those times made me realize just how much song had been a part of our lives. Songs of fun and laughter. Songs of comfort to ease fears. Songs of rest in sleepless nights. Songs of love. Songs of Jesus.
Somewhere in the course of growing up, a mother’s songs are replaced by the voices of others. Childhood is left behind. Innocence gives way to independence and mothers the world over hold to the hope that their love songs will resonate in the lives of their children.
Letting go is always bittersweet, but especially for mothers of prodigals. Your nostalgic moments are private. You share little and pray much and you question if the ballad of your love was truly heard, much less embraced. You wonder how the pull of the world was so much more influential than the purpose of your love.
God understands your heart. As “The Father”, He knows the sorrow of watching His children respond to voices that want to silence His. He has seen sin in every form it takes on and He has grieved, but never despaired. He has never wrung his hands anxiously wondering what to do, but purposed to stretch them out between two thieves and make His love known with an offer of forgiveness and life. And, amazingly, He did this while we were in a sinful state.
Sometimes we need reminders of that. We need the hope that comes from knowing God loves the prodigals as well as those who weep for them. That is reason enough to pray on. But there is another that is just as important ~ you need God’s comfort. You need the gentle exchange of His love for your hurt; His strength for your weariness. If you doubt that consider the words of Zephaniah 3:17: “The Lord your God is with you, He is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you. He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.”
I confess that I had never thought of God singing over me. And in the context of remembering the motive behind the lullabies I sang to my son, I am moved to tears of gratitude that His love is so personal. It is music to my soul in notes inaudible to the world. It is the lullaby of God, assuring me He is near, and the refrain reminds His children of His willingness to comfort, His desire to save, and His delight in our relationship.
Are you in need of quieting? It may not be over a prodigal. The grief may take the form of fear; of an anxious thought that persists unmercifully. You may be facing financial burdens, health issues, broken relationships or loneliness. Whatever causes you a sleepless night is of concern to Our Father and He doesn’t intend for you to bear it alone.
Cry out to Him, and when you do, He will draw you into the strength of His everlasting arms and comfort you with the lullaby of His love.