We’ve spent days devising and trying plans to bring balance into Marshall’s life, but he only wants to be on the computer, scrolling up and down the page, reading, clicking on the next Pokémon to look at. I worry about the effects of electromagnetic radiation. But, if we do not give him the computer, he yells and escalates into aggression. Worse, he feels unloved and not understood.
Yet, yesterday he was on the computer from noon until 11 at night, despite the fact I spent half an hour with him coming up with a schedule for the day. He did help Joel plant some tomatoes.
Does Mother God feel this kind of helplessness at her own choice not to control her children? We are gifted, above all gifts, with free will. She is always following us, and far more rarely, do we follow her. What irony she must observe when theologians say God is all-powerful. Perhaps she feels what I do as a parent: not in control, powerless.
But perhaps instead Mother God knows well what I forget: time has more power to change us than anything. Waiting is the power, and waiting with, the super-power. Not abandoning, not taking away, just quiet, loving presence that is always ready to help.
This is like Father Gregory Boyd’s life among homies in LA. He has to live his life waiting for them to come for help, and going to them to hang out in the barrios so they know he loves them. And some do come.
Back to joy: how does Mother God stay joyful in this endeavor to love and wait? Yes, she draws people to Herself (John 12:32), but drawing isn’t forcing. So many invited to the wedding do not come (e.g. Matt. 22:5).
Maybe she feels joyful about the things I do. A first tooth, or first tooth fallen out. Shiny hair spun out like silk, on a baby’s head. A child who forgives when he doesn’t have to. A child planting tomatoes. A child healing through patient love.