One moment Elijah was a prophet to the
nation; the next an outlaw on the run for his life. It takes grace
and fortitude to adjust to such immense changes. If you find
yourself a leader one moment and a nobody the next, (as I did back
in 1985) – or a wife or husband one moment, and a “single” again the
next, then, although it may sound attractive to rush out to find
some suitable role or vision to latch onto, it may actually not be
the wisest move.
many of our problems may have stemmed from being “vision-centred”
rather than Christ-focused in the first place – in which case the
Lord will be most interested in bringing our souls back into
balance. Taking time out to be with Him is essential, therefore, for
our long-term well-being.
Many of us also experience a profound
sense of anticlimax when we reach the goals we have worked so long
and hard to achieve. Suddenly we are left wondering what it is we
should be aiming for next.
It is much the same for the hefty
percentage of parents who experience the pangs of “empty nest
syndrome.” They have spent so many years investing time and energy –
along with other stuff that having kids entails – but what comes
next when they have finally left home?
Rather than remaining devastated
because we have “lost” our child, we will find it easier if we can
look on this as a jumping off point for ourselves as well as for
them. In fits and starts, and with many a missed flap of their
wings, our sons and daughters have long been en route to becoming
fully fledged adults in their own right. Is this not what we have
been working and praying towards?
To be sure, they may still be far
from fully safe and stable, but the whole nature of our relationship
with them has been changing throughout their growing years. All
roles and relationships are loaned to us in life, and when their
season is complete, we must hand them back. It does not mean that we
have suddenly ceased to be their parents.
If you are blessed to still have a
partner, this is time given back to rediscover that sense of purpose
and “chemistry” you once shared as a couple before you had children,
but which may have become somewhat stale with the passing of years.
If the opportunity is there, start
now, before the children have left. There is no surer way to avoid
the fate so many fall prey to in mid-life, who do little more than