This mama’s back to school prayer speaks to our hearts since summer will be over and kids heading back to school soon.
As we wound through the aisle on that end-of-summer scavenger hunt called school supply shopping, it hit me. Her list didn’t include glue this year. I pointed this out to my soon-to-be second-grader and teased her: “That means no more fun! It’s hard-core learning time now!”
We laughed, but inside, part of my mama heart sniffled a bit. I know it’s cliché to lament the passing of time and the growing up that is too fast and the firsts and lasts that will never come again. But still it hurts a bit.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m excited for her to grow up! An independent child who can buckle her own seat belt, wash her own hair, and nuke her own mac and cheese is pretty much a dream come true for a mom like me. But when she started acting a little clingy lately — grabbing my hand in the parking lot, asking me to read her another bedtime story, wanting me to sit right next to her as she colors and crafts at the dining room table — I must admit that I didn’t mind.
As a perpetual time-waster and world-class procrastinator, a verse that’s always stuck out to me is an exhortation from Paul. He urges us in Ephesians to make the best use of our time, to make the most of every opportunity. He says that these days are bad ones, so we must redeem the time.
Redeem the time. Or, as my mama translation tells my heart, don’t wish away the time. Don’t spend so much energy looking forward to the weekend or the vacation or the return of the school year or the end of soccer season that we miss the beauty of today! Don’t resent the time, longing for an end to this season or phase that challenges us and exhausts us.
That doesn’t mean we don’t have moments or days or weeks of hard parenting. It means, to me, that even on those most trying and tiring days, we find something in that time to appreciate, to enjoy, to be thankful for.