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  • Kimberly Oden

The Launch: And Then There Was One...

Time is of the essence. There is no time to waste - keep it simple.

Even in ordinary things - your daily routines.

Deal as sparingly as possible with the things the world thrusts on you...

1 Cor 7:29-31 MSG

And then there was one…Last Sunday, I moved one more rock to the big container signifying one more week until Oliver launches. I created these rock-filled jars over Christmas break as a reminder of the brevity of time. The large jar holds rocks that signify the number of weeks that have passed for each of my boys - from the time they were born to the day of graduation....time spent. ⌛️

The medium jar holds the weeks remaining with Isaiah and the smallest jar now holds one rock…and tonight, after Oliver's commencement ceremonies, it will be empty. 😱 …time remaining. ⏳

My breath almost feels absent from my lungs as I ponder the approaching evening. Yes, I have already launched two sons and yet every time “the launch” approaches, the importance and brevity of the stewardship we have been given as parents becomes crystal clear.

A friend asked me on May 1st what I would tell my early mama self when I first stepped into this treasured role. I had JUST gathered Oliver’s graduation photos that day so my eyes were quite leaky as I began to type my reply. What followed, was a sweet and tender letter from the Lord…one that I saved to share on graduation day. My prayer is that it would bless

other young mamas who are on the road behind me with wisdom and revelation I wish I had on day one…and yet I know full well, that I will be able to write a similar letter years from now because of the blessed growth that comes from following The One who has gone before!

“Sweet girl,

If you remember anything from this moment forth it is this - He’s not yours…your son is Mine, tendered to you for a few brief years before I launch him forth into his divine and set-apart calling.

You have been blessed with the weighty and winsome role of “mama” & yet it is oh so important to remember your role in the grander plan...I have a plan not yet revealed…In my wisdom and sovereignty, I created your son with a specific facet of My Divine character in order that he might become a Kingdom Carrier, and as such, he is called to wield well this facet of My character so that he might go out and impact the watching world for My glory and others salvation.

Your job, mama, is to simply steward well the position you have been given.

Infuse your son with Truth...when you walk with him, talk with him, when you watch him as he falls asleep in your arms, when you love him and discipline him...wash him with the infallible and fervently cleansing Truth of My Word.

The Word.

The Word is a Person…Jesus.

He is infallible and He cannot lie.

Pray first and foremost that your son meets Him and accepts Jesus not only as his Savior, but also and equally as important, as his Lord of all -

Pray that your son will relinquish all rights to himself and allow Jesus to become Lord over

his thoughts,

his decisions,

his words,

and his actions,

because as he does, your son will become

broken bread and poured out wine - ready and prepared to launch...

And THAT👆🏽, dear daughter, is the point! Your son is not yours to have and hold for eternity….he is Mine and I have called you to prepare him for The Launch.

I’ve simply loaned him to you and charged you and your husband with the responsibility to equip him well for the journey ahead...

The Launch will arrive before you know it and even though it may be marked with tears of “I wish I had” or “I wonder if...”, or “I hope he remembers this, that & the other...”, you have The Word now - you have insight now - today - on Day One...

Yes, I formed him in your womb...on purpose and for a purpose.

He is in your care for the next 18 years SO THAT he might discover that purpose!

HE is not the stewardship, YOUR ROLE as mama IS...

Steward well this position of authority.

Walk ahead of him with bold boundaries until the time I reveal to you, holding your hand over his head as protection...

Then, at just the right time, I will reveal to you the very moment that it is time for your hand to move from his tousled hair to the small of his back - the moment when you begin to walk beside - the moment when commands change to questions that will cause him to pause in his tracks and ponder the choices before him.

This transition is the moment you start becoming a picture of his future wife…one that loves and supports and helps. One where you step back and allow your husband to be “the heavy” during these tender years of teen transition.

No nagging needed. Just love, encouragement and questions at this point.

You and your husband will be there for the times he chooses good and not best, and yes, you will also be there during the times he chooses flesh- filled failures instead of wielding winsome wisdom.

You will be a firm foundation and picture of my steadfast love that is not based on performance. My love in and through you will serve as a reminder for him that there is nothing he can ever do to earn it - it just IS and EVER WILL BE.

Yes, he will launch, and when he does, pray...

pouring out your heart like water before Me is a privilege and a responsibility that continues until you arrive on the other side of heaven.

After The Launch, you are not responsible FOR his choices, but you are responsible TO continue crying out in prayer on his behalf.

Daughter, the calling of motherhood is weighty and for good reason...I placed Jesus within the context of family for a reason - it’s a visual for you...

A picture of the first place of discipleship.

The first place your son will learn about authority.

The first place he will learn about unconditional love...

The first place he will learn about the body of Christ...

Sweet girl, cling to Me, not your son as he is natural and good for him to begin to pull away and become the strong faith-filled man I’ve called him to become.

Your job - the most important job - is to abide in Me.

Ask Me to give you marching orders day by day, moment by moment.

My orders will ALWAYS be marked by my Peace and love.

Peace is a person, Kimberly. When you remember to, “hold your Peace”, it is simply a reminder to hang onto My Presence within you! I AM Emmanuel, your God who is ever with you wherever you go!

I AM with you and will never leave you even during the darkest hours of parenting. Cling to Me. Trust Me. You can take Me at My Word.

I love you and ask that you trust Me just as I have entrusted the life of this dear son into your hands for such a brief moment in time...

And lastly remember is brief.

With endearing love of The One who knows the deepest desires of your heart,

~Your Father in heaven

P.S. This is one of Oliver's favorite songs...the lyrics SO speak to a mama who is letting go at The Launch! Oh my, leaky eyes again! 😭 Hope it ministers to your hearts! 💗

"...If more of You means less of me Take ev’rything Yes, all of You is all I need Take ev’rything..."

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