Welcome to Guest Post month at The MOB Society! Today’s post comes from Becke’ Stuart, mother of four boys, the photographer behind Lulu Photography, and author of the blog Moop and Saba! Please welcome her!
I am plopped on the top bunk trying not to bang my head or completely lose myself in the wad of covers. It is the second born’s domain and it is messy. I peer down the ladder at Eli and ask which stuffed animal he wants to take to the sleepover. The blankets are a given. He has slept with them for 9 years and a week; I know they are going into the overnight bag.
But, the growing boy surprises me. He shows me his desire for autonomy, perhaps even a taste of manhood.
“I am not taking any animals. Or my blankets.” I almost laugh out loud and tell him the absurdity of not taking his blankets. I make it clear we would not be bringing him blankets in the middle of the night and that it really is OK to hide them deep in his sleeping bag for insomnia-induced-emergencies.
But the boy, now small man, looks at me with fierce eyes. “No. They are all staying here. They can have their own bunking party.”
I feel in my spirit this isn’t the right choice, but I also feel that it is time to allow this boy-man to make decisions. Eli leaves. The animals and blankets are left to themselves with the mess called his bed.
Things are going so smoothly. The back of my eyelids greet me and I feel a deep sleep coming on. The sleep is perhaps deeper than I thought, for I barely hear the ringing of my phone. My thoughts turn to my friend’s girl, Lily, a long awaited baby that is due anytime. The mantra “Lily is coming” carries my feet into the kitchen only to catch the voicemail. Eli can’t sleep. We are bringing him home.
I greet my sweet boy-man at the door and put him to bed. Eric awakens the next morning a little shocked that we have more children at home than we did the previous night. In his wise style, he pulls Eli aside and takes a reading of his heart. He fathers with grace and mercy and understanding. I am overwhelmed at God’s goodness of giving me him to be their Daddy.
“You know, when I was a little boy....” And off comes another story of his childhood. It cuts straight to the point. Eric wants the boys to know that he was them once. He wants them to know that he knows their hearts. He wants them to know that they are accepted and cherished. He sprinkles their hearts with grace instead of condemnation. I have so much to learn from the leader of our home, and this is why I will always point all four of our boys to their father.
The first step to pointing boys to their fathers is to let go of control. It’s a process, this letting go. We women were cursed from the very first bite of forbidden fruit in the garden. We have wanted to manipulate and control things ever since. Perhaps that’s why so many of us struggle with fear. Do we really allow ourselves to trust God and our husbands if we think that we are the ones holding everything together?
I knew I had to do turn the boys over completely to Eric in everything, or I would still want to control things. “May I have a snack?” Go ask your Dad. “Can we watch a movie?” Go ask your Dad. “Can we play spades as a family?” Go ask your Dad.
It isn’t that women are incapable of making these decisions, but the goal is to create healthy relationships between our boys and husbands so that when the hard questions start coming, the boys are already in the natural habit of turning to their fathers, the authority of the home. “How late may I stay out?” “What college do you think is a wise decision?” “Do you think this girl would be a good wife for me?” Eric will have insight into all the hard questions, and all I will have to do is sit back and be thankful I don’t have to carry the burden of whether I am pointing them in the right direction. Turning boys over to their fathers creates freedom in our feminine souls.
Eric often reminds me of the father of the prodigal son. He stands by, allowing his sons to start to choose their own way, but is always in the background with arms wide open when they simply need to come home.
Point your precious boys to their fathers. And then step back and watch God do something beautiful.
Becke Stuart is the mother of four boys ranging from 13 years old to 6 months, each one keeping her laughing, and driving her to her knees with the daily prayer that they would love Jesus and His Word more than anything else. Becke’s passion is to see and portray the Soul-Whisperer clearly through the pages of Scripture, photography, and writing.
Throughout the month of November, we want to thank you, our faithful readers, for sticking by us as we worked through the rebuild of our site. In addition to giveaways, we are also thankful to our contributor, Franchesca Cox of Small Bird Studios, for providing free printables that we can share with you. Enjoy, and thank you for your support!