If you’re a parent with adult children, or even if you’re not, this article is for you. Read on to find your special mission to care for and protect those you love from my new friend, Susan Macias. If you’re an adult child reading this, then you might like to pass along this blog post to your mom, dad, grandparent, or whoever wants to do the one best thing for you to allow you to live your life.
“Here’s one more.” I wedged the box in the last available spot in the trunk. “Thanks, Mom.” My daughter and I locked eyes and hugged hard. Then, anxious to get on the road, she jumped in her car and waved one last farewell out the window as she drove away.
I smiled and enthusiastically returned the wave. This wasn’t my first child to send off into the world and I knew how to maintain a happy face, though inside I felt a familiar rip as part of my heart drove away with her.
Standing in the sunshine, I faced the breeze, closed my eyes, and surrendered my child into the loving hands that created her. “Jesus, there she goes. Please protect and guide her. Please keep her from harm and from those that would want to lure her away from You. Please, Lord.”
A New Assignment
Several years prior, when my eldest flew the nest, my prayer contained more desperation and even more “pleases.” But this time I stood praying in confidence, but not because I was sure everything would work out. My confidence lay in my knowledge that I had a new assignment in her life. An assignment just as important as educator, taxi driver, dinner maker, tear wiper, and manners teacher. It was time to take my stand on the rampart as a prayer warrior over my daughter’s life.
My adult children live their own lives, which can drive me crazy. Maintaining a healthy relationship with them when they make wacky decisions is challenging. But I’m able to restrain myself from nagging or offering unsolicited advice when I talk about it all to Jesus instead of them.
Stand and Pray
I station myself to stand and pray for my kids for as long as I have breath.
Now, let me warn you. It takes strength and self-control to stand, because it often doesn’t feel enough like doing to satisfy me. I’m a Do-er: capitol D, active voice, all the time. This trait served me well in the active Mom stage of life. But in the empty nest stage, it frustrates me.
I’ve had to re-define “doing” to believe that standing and praying are the most important things I can DO. The Lord led me through a familiar scripture in new ways to prove this to me. I’ve always loved Ephesians 6:13-18 (ESV) which explains our spiritual armor – something about suiting up and charging into the fray. Talk about action! But the Lord helped me focus on the only action we are actually instructed to take: stand. It’s so counter-intuitive that the Word states it four times in verses 10, 11, 13, and 14. But I didn’t get it. Why dress for battle and then just stand there?
Actually, in verse 18 we’re instructed to do one other action, and this I totally missed until just a few years ago. After we’ve put on the armor from verses 13-17, in verse 18 we’re told to pray.
Realizing that prayer was the point of putting on the armor rocked my world. As an empty-nest mom, it transformed my outlook from feeling powerless to being a Prayer Warrior Mom. I could climb my watchtower, look out over my kids’ lives, lift my sword, and pray.
After our children leave, a new special mission calls us to remain active. We’re assigned to our watchtower and given a special battle plan of prayer. There’s nothing more active we could do for them.
Have your kids left the building? Then it’s time to scurry up your watchtower, don your armor, and pray.
Susan Macias is a writer and speaker who works to train up an army of women in the second half of life to serve the Kingdom, confidently follow Jesus, and fight offensively in prayer for their families. Her award-winning book UNCEASING: A Parent’s Guide to Conquer Worry And Pray With Power is available on Amazon. You can find Susan at her blog, susankmacias.com, or on her podcast, We’re Not Done Yet! Connect with her on Facebook, Instagram, or MeWe.