This is a verse that, over these teenage years of my sons, I have repeatedly spoken in prayer. At one of those many difficult moments in my parenting journey I found a pair of books by author Jodie Berndt, Praying the Scriptures for Your Teenagers and Praying the Scriptures for Your Children. The value of these books is best summed up in a quote from Ron Luce in the foreword that says this, “…as we look around at what the world has to offer–from point-and-click pornography, to television and movies dripping with violence and sex, to music that pulses with obscenity and anger–we cannot help but realize that our battle is not against our teenagers; it is for them.” He continues, “Several years ago, Katie and I began praying God’s Word over our children. We have found this approach to be effective and productive–particularly during those times when our own words, or our own attempts to pursue and protect our kids, were not enough.” I have found the last part of his quote to be the most comforting part of using scripture as my prayer. So often, as I lay wide awake in the middle of the night fretting over the latest struggle, my conversations with God were desperate words without direction. With the help of these books, divided into common topics parents and children face, I was able to find scripture verses that spoke words of hope and promise into my parenting concerns. Using these verses as prayers re-directed those prayers from being my will to being God’s will for my son’s lives.
Most recently it is this Jeremiah verse that has spoken to the season of life we are experiencing. The school year is coming to a close and this year Honorable Son #1 becomes a Pennsylvania Virtual Charter School graduate. This is the school program that we have used for his entire home school/cyber school education. The journey has been filled with successes and failures, joys and struggles, laughter and tears; all the things that shape life.
After 13 years of standing by his side, my first born is ending this part of our journey together and beginning a new one.
His graduation ceremony was held at a facility 4 hours from our house. We were blessed to have several family members join us to celebrate this milestone.
Each family was given the choice to have their “learning coach”-the adult leading the teaching in the home-sit and walk with the graduate for the ceremony. It was a joy to sit with not only my son, but also with the other students and moms bursting with pride over their accomplishments. There is a bonding camaraderie that has formed among these families that have taken an education path different then the traditional brick and mortar education. I chose not to walk with Son #1 for his diploma presentation; deciding that moment was his to enjoy and representative of the starting point for his new beginning.
Grumpy, Grammy, Honorable Son #1
Me, Honorable Son #1, Honorable Son #2, Dear Husband
After dinner with the family, we checked into our hotel for Son #1 to prepare for the school prom that was being held at the hotel. He went stag to the event and had a good time with his class mates and teachers. A fun ending to his graduation day.
Congratulations, Son, go forth recognizing your blessings, I know God has plans for you…