For some reason as I left Walmart today, I looked up at the exit sign, and my mind wandered....it does that a lot while in Walmart. But today I thought about something that happened about 13 years ago.
It happened on a regular trip to the store. My son was about three or four and he was walking alongside me chattering like a little magpie, probably about some toy he wanted to look at once we were in the store. He held my hand as we crossed the parking lot, stopping to make sure the way was clear to cross. Pretty typical day.
We entered the lobby area and I released his hand long enough to grab a buggy. For once, the buggy didn't stick...not even a little. I grabbed it and started for the entrance. What occurred next happened so quickly I'm still not sure what took place. There was a roar and all of a sudden a van was driving through the doors and into the lobby. It hit a metal trash can that went flying and as I swirled around all I could do was yell for my son. I pictured him somewhere underneath the van or crushed between the van and the wall. The panic that followed as I called his name and desperately searched for him still makes my chest tighten.
A woman just inside the doors caught me and let me know he was standing inside the entrance. My little fellow was standing in front of a display of flowers and sobbing with fright. I have no idea how he got there...but he was safe and that was all that mattered. I scooped him up and held him and thought I'd never let go. I tried to remain calm so he would feel safe...but I so wanted to cry with him and never let him go.
We later found out that the woman in the van had some sort of seizure. She was going to be okay. The store has since moved those big concrete pillars to better secure the doors. Story over, but not for me.
That day I realized that I couldn't protect my son...not even when I was standing right there. I was going to have to learn to fully turn him over to God and trust.
Maybe the reason I thought about that incident today was because once again I am having to trust God with my son. This week he will "sign" with a school and in just a few short months he will be off to college. I've prayed that God would direct Levi to the school where he would be guided on the path that He has for him. It wasn't the school we thought he'd be going to, but I have peace that it is where God will guide him on the next step of his journey.
And once again, I'm realizing I am at a loss as to how to protect Levi or help him. I want to scoop him up and hug him...of course this is NOT something he wants me to do. I want to hold him just one more time and let him know it will be okay, or maybe have him tell me that...again, not something he wants me to do. All I can do is trust, trust that all I have taught him has found good soil. Trust that God has a plan for him that is greater than what even I can imagine and that God will direct him.
It's all more than a bit overwhelming...letting go, not knowing what lies ahead. That's when the second part of today's story comes into play. Just before I got to my car with all these thoughts running through my head, I saw a sweet smiling lady with a shirt that simply said, "But God..."
I don't know what the future holds, but God knows...and that is enough.
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the , “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.