I can do it by myself.

“I can do it by myself.”

I remember when my kids first began to say that as toddlers. Nearly broke my heart.

Now, as teens, they still say it when I try to do something for them that I’ve taught them to do for themselves or something they want to learn to do for themselves. It’s part of growing up. DSC_0012

The bittersweet truth is I want my kids to grow up and be independent. They’ll outgrow needing me in many of the ways they’ve needed me as children. Our relationship will continue to change and grow. I’m already seeing and enjoying glimpses of that.

But I’ve been reminded today that while that may be true of the parent/child relationship it is not true of our relationship with our Heavenly Father.

I must grow more and more dependent on God with each passing year. In every relationship and role I must cling fiercely to Him.

I cannot do it—-any of it—-by myself.

But I try. Everyday. In some way.

I go on my merry way parenting, teaching, managing, friending, wife-ing,—-acting as if I can do it by myself.

Epic fail.

“I think I can, I think can” might have helped the Little Engine in a child’s book but it’s a shallow, useless philosophy for life.

The pages of God’s Word reveal heartbreaking examples of men and women trying to do life independent of God.

But the Bible also reveals the blessed life lived through the One Who Died in Our Place.

I can do all things, if I do all things through Christ, the Apostle Paul reminds us in Philippians 4:13.

I can parent, teach, grieve, manage, help, suffer, lead, serve, wait….

whatever life requires of me, I can do if I do it all through Christ.tree 4tree 2 of 2

As I teach and train my children, one thing is at the top of my list: teaching (and modeling)  a life of total dependence on God. I hope that’s something they’ll never outgrow.


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