God Is Faithful

My oldest child turned thirty on Sunday.


I found this letter in his baby book. I wrote it over thirty years ago, while we were waiting for him to arrive, before we knew if he was Daniel or Katie Beth. Reading through the letter, I was once again amazed at God’s faithfulness and grace. He has answered these prayers. His hand has been on my son, sustaining his life, forming his character, directing his path.

What undeserved blessing He chooses to pour on us! Here is what I wrote so many years ago:

Riding home on the bus the other day, I realized that I had never entertained the notion that you would become some great musical or artistic genius, mathematical wizard, or brilliant scientist. My main hope is that you will mature into a man or woman of character and integrity, that your life will be a reflection of Christ’s character and the principles of Scripture. My only real disappointment would be in seeing you reject the gift of salvation that Christ provided for us in His death and resurrection…Be what God designed you to be while here on earth — a happy toddler, an obedient child, a faithful student, a loyal friend, a doctor, a janitor, a housewife, a zookeeper, a songwriter, a missionary…Just do whatever you do to glorify Him and bring honor to His name.

I pray that you will develop a love for the Word that will give you the wisdom to discern between good and evil,

that you will have the strength of character to stand up for what you know is right, and to shun what you know is wrong,

that you will be faithful and reliable in your friendships and responsibilities,

that you will learn discipline and self-control as you learn to submit to the authorities God places over you in life,

that you will learn to rest in God’s faithfulness in all situations,

that you will exercise the great gift of creativity, imagination, and thinking that God has passed on to you,

that you will be a joyful, bright and shining light in a dark world.

I can see that I have a lot of growing up to do along with you.

Praise God! He has so graciously answered this prayer!

He is faithful.

He is faithful even when it doesn’t look like He is answering our prayers.

I was hesitant to write this post that praises God for the work He has done in my son’s life. I was hesitant, because I know many parents do not see their children walking in the faith. Many live with deep disappointment. Many wonder what went wrong. Many blame themselves for their children’s choices. Many pray fervently for children who live in rebellion against God, and still they see no change.

But God does answer all our prayers. He just doesn’t answer them all with a yes. He sees a much bigger picture than we do, and knows exactly what He is doing. I have a hard time remembering that sometimes, especially if it involves people that I love. God is not ignoring the “unanswered” prayers I have prayed. He is in the process of answering them in the way He knows is best. Sometimes He’s helping me see something I need to deal with in my own life. Other times I think He’s just helping me find out if I really trust Him or not.

He loves our children even more than we do. They are ultimately in His hands. He is in control. We can pray, trusting Him, and knowing that He will work all things for His glory and our good. We can rest in that truth.


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  1. Thank you for your encouragement.

  2. I am so glad you decided to go ahead and post this! What a blessing and encouragement it is to read about families where this happens, and to remind us moms to keep on praying for our children.

    My 14 yo son (he has Aspergers/ADHD) told me last week that he is an atheist. I know some of it is that he loves to get under my skin with comments like this because of his disorder, but my husband is also unsaved, and he hears comments like this from him. 🙁
    I was devastated, but I immediately took it to the Lord in prayer. He reminded me that I have been faithful in training him in the scriptures since he was little, and every day as we homeschool, he reads his bible and hears me pray.
    And He reminded me of the lasting influence of a mother who fears the Lord, such as John Newton’s mother or Monica, the mother of Augustine.
    So I will just keep on praying.

    I know several families in our church who have done everything to try to instill a love for the Lord in their children, yet their adult children are not walking with the Lord….but they continue to pray. Sometimes that is all you can do, and all He wants us to do when you’ve done all you can.

  3. Thanks for posting this — it’s such an encouragement to me today. By the way, your youngest girl is also a great encouragement to my girl in living a God-focused life (long-distance)!

  4. Thank you for this encouragement! God is in control! I need to hear this every day/hour! It is discouraging when children you have homeschooled, taught scriptures, prayed with and for do not walk with The Lord. I sometimes feel like a failure in the most important job, a job that I still love. Thank you for this post this morning! They are His, He loves them more than I do, His plans and purposes will be fulfilled. Thank you!

  5. What a tender mother’s heart you had for you son, even when he was a baby… 🙂