While crossing a catwalk at Los Angeles International Airport, I stop to notice the sunrise. The sun paints the sky with a cheerful palette of pastels, welcoming the morning with a wash of watercolors. But my mood doesn’t match the atmosphere. These trips to the airport, with their inherent goodbyes, are becoming something of a regular occurrence.
And I wonder if saying goodbye will ever get any easier.
My daughter flew home for Thanksgiving, and again for Christmas, and we savored the moments with all of us under one roof again. But the return trip to the airport came too soon. Now I find myself staring into the sky, waiting to see her plane.
With so many miles between my daughter’s college dorm and our front door, prayer has become a revitalized passion. I pray for her safety. I pray for her friends. I pray for her professors.
I pray and pray and pray. Because what else can a mom do from a thousand miles away?
To be a mom with a kid at college is to be a mom with a heart for prayer — more so than ever before.
This renewed devotion to prayer began on the day we moved her things into her dorm. After settling into her new room, we visited a local Christian bookstore, and I saw a book I had read months earlier: The Circle Maker by Mark Batterson.
The book focuses on prayer, primarily on walking and praying at the same time. Mark Batterson encourages believers to walk in prayer circles. The way the Israelites circled Jericho. Walk around your neighborhood while praying. Walk around your church campus while praying. Walk around your child’s school while praying.
So that night, before leaving her college campus, I walked around my daughter’s new home-away-from-home.
A sidewalk encircles the entire circumference of her campus, and along this path, Scripture is engraved in stone. So with each step, I reflected on the words at my feet, and prayed with these verses in mind.
Lord, show her Your ways.
Teach her Your paths.
Encourage her to draw near to You.
May she know Your Presence.
Help her to commit all of her plans to You.
May she know that all success comes directly from Your hand.
Remind her to give thanks.
For You are good and worthy to be praised.
May she find joy in hope.
May she find patience in difficult times.
May she find You through prayer.
Help her to practice humility.
And to lift Your name high.
May she continue to act justly.
May she strive to love mercy.
May she embrace You and walk humbly.
Help her to seek You first in all things.
And in all righteousness.
As I completed my prayer circle, I stood before her dormitory once again, and I saw the verse that’s etched in stone before the doors to her new home:
For the eyes of the LORD range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to Him. ~ 2 Chronicles 16:9
These ancient words — these living words — whispered hope to this mama’s heart. No matter the miles between us, the LORD is here, and He is keeping watch.
And months later, when I’m standing on a curb at the airport, I remember the circle I walked and prayed over. And I hear, once again, the Word of the LORD speaking throughout the ages: Fear not. I AM here. And you are loved.
Are you looking for inspiration to start your week?
Join the linkup called Inspire Me Monday!
The rules are easy peasy:
1. Write, show, or share something that will inspire others. It can be one thing or a compilation like I did. It can be a quick thing like a quote or a longer thing like sharing some verses in the Bible and what it says to you. Anything goes.
2. No blog? No worries… share in your comments something that could inspire others.
3. Link back over here using that sweet little button made just for this or a blog link and invite your friends.
3. Link up your blog and join the community of inspiring people by using the cute little linky tool.
4. Use the URL of your specific post, not just your home page. We want to get right to the inspiration that you are sharing with us!
5. Visit a couple others, but especially the one right before you to give a little encouragement! This is the fun part ~ already encouraging and inspiring others right from the get go!
Okay, inspire and be inspired . . .