Thank you, Pastor Mohr, for reminding us of the gift God gives us in auxiliary parenting.
I move my right arm and feel a tug at my wrist. I look down, but nothing is there. For five days, a plastic band surrounded that wrist – a fetter to remind me of my bound service to my wards. For 139 hours and 15 minutes, I had charge of five young men and a college chaperone as we attended one of the largest events in our lifetime – the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod National Youth Gathering.
And now I don’t.
My young charges have been returned to their parents. The wrist band has been cut off. I have been set free. But still, I feel it tugging. I still sense the urge to turn around and count- 1-2-3-4-5-6 – to confirm I have them all safely with me.
After our closing devotion upon returning home, one of the mothers commented to me, “Why haven’t you adopted a child, yet? I see how great you are with these kids. God has given you a gift.”
He has indeed – but in the barrenness of my being single, my gift is not to bring a child purposely into the brokenness of a single parent home. No, I walk beside these parents, auxiliary to them, helping them raise their children. I stand next to them in bringing Godly children to adulthood. And God has blessed me with these children, for a brief time.
With great wonderment, I pause and marvel that God would be so kind to have given me such a great gift. But still, these several days later, I feel that wristband tugging. And that’s when I look down at that wrist with its phantom tugging and smile as the epiphany slowly dawns – my boys are still my boys. The gift of my auxiliary role is not yet ended. I still get to count them, 1-2-3-4-5-6, each and every week. Only now, the question behind the count is not, “Are they safely with ME,” but are they safely with Him Who gave them to me? Are they in the Word… are they receiving the Sacrament… are they growing in their faith?
For 139 hours and 15 minutes, I had charge of these young men, but I shall stand auxiliary to them for a lifetime, encouraging my brothers in faith to grow in the Lord. They will always be “My Boys.” Thank you Lord, for Your gift to me in these young men!
Rev. Michael Mohr