Raising Up Souls

Recently, I wrote what could have been a very misunderstood, morbid status on one of my social media accounts, but it seemed many understood the heart of it.

“A child in heaven is in some ways a greater blessing than a child on earth- strong statement? I’ll be blogging about this thought, especially written to those who are struggling with or dwell on earthly healing and believe it’s what’s best- this earth doesn’t compare and it’s not our home and the tension is, death isn’t a part of God’s will. Death isn’t a “death sentence” because of Jesus and eternal life with Him. This truth doesn’t take the pain of loss away, though- we still must live out the hope in heartache”

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This came from a deep place in my heart of hurt and pain and God stepped in and spoke truth to me and I feel many need to hear this truth, too.

Someone posted, shortly after Zekey died, the verse Matthew 8:13 “And to the centurion Jesus said, “Go; let it be done for you as you have believed.” And the servant was healed at that very moment.”

It’s verses like these, when thrown out carelessly, may make us sit in our sorrow and think, “What else could I have done? What else could I have prayed?”

I believe God still intervenes and pours out healing on people who have disease. I also believe,

sometimes, a greater story unfolds when a life ends here and one gets to go to their new and eternal Home, where we all someday, will dwell with our Lord forever.

Through this difficult season of Zekey’s health depleting and then his going Home to Jesus, my faith has gone on quite the journey. I was seeking God with my everything, doing all the things I thought I needed to please Him and bring my boy healing. We prayed for healing fervently, we did all the healthiest diet changes, we took Zekey to be prayed over by our elders but in the end, Zekey’s life’s purpose and earthy healing didn’t collide. Jesus through Zekey’s story would continue be told as he rested in the arms of Jesus.

This is where I want to pour out truth to those of you who may believe that earthly healing is grander than going home to heaven.

It’s an honor but an extremely high calling to call myself a momma.

We are called to raise these little souls in the Lord. To prepare them that no matter what comes their way, God is with and for them. No matter what mankind does to the body, Christ defeated it all at the cross. To help their hearts cry out to their Maker, the way all hearts are meant to cry out. To know the depth and breadth of God’s love for them and that they can share this truth to those they come in contact with- with the world.

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A letter from Paul:

Ephesians 3:14-21 ”

14 For this reason I kneel before the Father, 15 from whom every family[a] in heaven and on earth derives its name. 16 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.”

Unfortunately, far too often, I see us raising successful, athletic, smart, musical children instead. We as mommas get so caught up in making sure that they fit in with the crowd. I believe God gives us beautiful gifts and we are to steward them- but how well do our kids know the God of the universe? How well do they understand the gift of the cross and how it directly effects their little souls? Are we pouring out truth into them? Are we being Jesus to them?

It’s so much easier to do what the world is doing because they’ll cheer us on. They will do it with us. But when we have to step away from what is popular to pour out more of Jesus into their precious souls, it can be exhausting.

Jesus saves people, not us as parents. But so closely to that I want to say, we have such a huge responsibility to help point their hearts towards Jesus. To help their souls cry out to The One who gave them breath. With our words, our actions, we are helping to mold them into who they will be as adults.

So, how are we doing? Are we raising future adults who will be more like the person they are called to be in Christ?

I have work to do. I’ll be bold and say, a lot of us have work to do. We need more Jesus so we can resist the devil and his evil schemes and pour out more Jesus into these little souls God gave us to care for. Sometimes this means stepping back from the world. Other times it means, stepping out further, in faith but pushing just hard enough that only those who want to know more of this Jesus we follow can join on our journey.

We are not here to raise children into successful adults. We are here, raising little souls to be all they are called to be in Christ. Where we fail, God can bring redemption but this isn’t a ticket to slack. May we rise up as parents, raising these souls to be our brothers and sisters in Christ.

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I wouldn’t wish it upon anyone. But, hear me when I say, there is a bit of relief that comes when you know that a child you poured out love and countless tears and prayer into, has been ushered into their eternal Home, Heaven. There is a weird, twisted peace that comes with knowing Zekey is no longer in my care. That beautiful burden and calling is over- He is now safe from this broken world, in the arms of the most loving Father of all, God, Yahweh himself. I wouldn’t pray Zekey back- He is home.

It’s a high calling, raising these little souls God has put in our care, to be set apart from the world because of Jesus and to be proud of that, not ashamed. To tell others of the Hope we have in Him. I have 3 more lives to continue to walk this life journey with, striving to show them the Jesus that has rescued the world and that is their gift for the taking.

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As I often say, out of a weary and burdened heart, aching for the day I see my Jesus face to face, all a part of One Body, full and complete in Him,

“Come, Lord Jesus.”

9 Comments

  • Reply July 9, 2014

    Andrew Holt

    This is a great post, my love. The best thing we can hope for our kids is that they grow up to love Jesus.

    • Reply July 9, 2014

      bree

      Andrew,

      I’m so glad I get to do this with you.

  • Reply July 9, 2014

    Amy Montgomery

    This is SUCH an encouragement. And so important for all christian parents to know that we are not called to raise our children to be ‘successful adults’, but to love Jesus. Musical skill, intelligence, athleticism etc. are all good things- but they are not THE thing, Jesus is. And we can get so caught up in them! Even as adults this is a struggle.

    Thankyou… I love your willingness to follow God in all things.

    • Reply July 9, 2014

      bree

      Amy,

      I’m so glad you were encouraged by this post. And yes, I too, as an adult, struggle. Blessings to you and thank you for your comment. Blessed me!

  • Reply July 9, 2014

    Jen Schrameck

    Breena, I heard a story once of a young girl who was taught by her mother how to cook, to clean, to learn, and be prepared in all things during her life. Yet, one day, she became very ill. She lay at the moment of death and asked her mother, “Mother, in all my life, you taught me how to live, but why did you not teach me how to die?” It became a chilling truth to me. The very reality we all share as a guarenteed experience is the end of our lives. The most important question to answer is, which side of eternity will we arrive to spend it. I thank you for sharing your life and family with us. From my view, I see Zekey’s life as a teacher of the important reality of Christ’s love and salvation for us all. That our destination is eternity and not the temporary events of life that do not guarentee salvation from sin. Our goal for this life should be to arrive in the presence of our Creator, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob through His Son, Jesus. Thank you for being bold in the love of Christ and for the truth of your life’s journey as you all walk this road with Him who can save the human soul from eternal death. Thank you for the important reminder of the truth of raising precious soul’s in the truth of Christ and for your courage to be genuinely honest in His love. Your words have purpose as I see our Saviour reflected in them. May He pour His abundant blessings over each of you.

    • Reply July 9, 2014

      bree

      Jen,

      As a mother who has lost her son, that story hits home. It was very encouraging, too. Way before Zekey was diagnosed, we talked of death because I feel if we keep it far from our kids, we put in a fear that doesn’t align with the truth of death. Death hurts and rips us up, but it isn’t a final as we on earth feel- for those in Christ, it’s a release into Home. And THAT is the gift of the cross.
      Thank you for commenting and sharing your story and encouragement. Blessings!

  • Reply July 9, 2014

    beejsteph

    Bree,

    This Post Was Such An Encouragement To Me. I Know That It Was Truly Written From Your Heart And Spoken With Love….Because It Went Directly To My Heart Where I Felt That Love And Encouragement.
    It Is No Doubt Hard To Lose One Of Our Sweet Babies…But Like You Said, We WILL See Them Again In Heaven! :) I Too Would NOT Wish My Son Back Into This World That Was Filled With Such Pain For Him. I Know That My Father God Is Looking After Him Better Than I Ever Could. I Always Felt So Proud And Privileged To Be Called “Mom” By My Boys…And I Know That I Still Have That Responsibility To Stephen Even Though He Is 19 Yrs Old. I Still Want To Show Stephen Everything That Jesus Would Have Me To Show Him…In Your Words ( Because I Just Could NOT Say It Any Better)…
    “We are called to raise these little souls in the Lord. To prepare them that no matter what comes their way, God is with and for them. No matter what mankind does to the body, Christ defeated it all at the cross. To help their hearts cry out to their Maker, the way all hearts are meant to cry out. To know the depth and breadth of God’s love for them and that they can share this truth to those they come in contact with- with the world.” This Is Exactly How I Feel About Stephen…What I Want For Him!!
    Thank you For sharing Your Heart!!
    BJ Miller

    • Reply July 10, 2014

      bree

      BJ,

      I’m so glad this blessed and encouraged you. Also, I am so very sorry that you have lost a son, too. So thankful for Jesus!

  • Reply July 10, 2014

    Bethany

    Right on, sister! ( : This was a great post to us parents on our TRUE purpose as parents in the lives of our precious children. It just all HAS to be about eternity, because that is a far greater and freeing reality than the frivolity we worry ourselves with on this earth. I pray that our grip on this world may continually be loosened.

    Side note: Ephesians 3:19 has been on my heart recently and you included it in this post. There is freedom to be found when our own wretchedness is realized and Christ’s love is comprehended more fully. Reading this verse a few weeks ago, I just thought, this is IT! This is the secret to joy: “to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.” Really, really knowing the depth of Christ’s love is what fills us with the fullness of God, true joy. Praise be to God!

    I thank Him for your heart poured out on this blog. Continually praying for peace and joy in the midst of suffering.

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