When Your Kids Grow Up

mom and adult daughter
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Many women wrestle with changing roles, changing times and changing relationships. Much has been said about the changes in life, but not nearly enough in regard to the maternal heart that has unfortunately allowed itself to be defined purely by its relationship with children.

The children become adults, their needs change, and they are gone. But the woman who nurtured them must always remember she is more than their last assignment.

God has sustained you in this life because you are needed. Perhaps it is not a need that requires a clean bandage on an old cut. But you are needed.

Be careful that you do not hold those around you captive. You must love enough to let go.

It takes faith to let go of the former things. Many cling to the past because they are convinced that their better days are behind them. This attitude leads to great depression.

Accept the challenge to which God is calling you, and you will realize there are new levels of love and life before you. Take some of that stuff you jammed in the attic and move it to some place where it can be used. Renovate your life with love and hope and release bitterness.

A woman who can move on is invincible. She may affect her nation like Esther or lead her people like Deborah.

She may nurture someone else's child at the breast of her experience as Naomi did Ruth. She may be in a position to serve her church like Anna.

Whatever your next assignment in life, you will miss it if you yearn for yesterday. Let it go!

Many mothers end up with resentful children who feel smothered and angry because they are made to feel guilty for growing up. Preserve what you have with your children by allowing the relationship to change in your hand.

The caterpillar has been fed in the cocoon of your teaching and has come forth a butterfly. It will never need what it once needed, but in every flap of its lovely wings there is a tribute to the cocoon that allowed it the grace of change.

Your authority has changed. You move from an authoritative sovereign to an adviser.

Your word may not be law, and they may not wear the color you think they should. But if you respect yesterday's child and recognize that she has become today's adult, she will always love you for the tremendous contribution you made to that independence.

T.D. Jakes is the bishop/chief pastor of the Potter's House, a nondenominational American megachurch with 30,000 members, located in Dallas, Texas. He is also a best-selling author, speaker and moviemaker.

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