(pic of Charlie on trumpet at church this summer)
I swear that is what I heard God saying to me as I started praying for Charlie (our college freshman son) during his trumpet audition for band/orchestra placement at college yesterday. I was appalled and couldn\’t believe what I was hearing, but it was so \’in my face\’ that I couldn\’t deny it either. Some of you may wonder if what I was hearing was satan, not God, telling me not to pray. Legitimate thought, but I really don\’t think so…it wasn\’t a temptation to not pray or a sea of muck impeding my prayers, it was a blazing command from my Lord to not pray. To pray would have been disobedience, that was clear.
Praying for Charlie during his auditions for college entrance was something I committed to last winter/spring. Every time he had an audition at a college (a heavy determinant as to whether he would be admitted to the college\’s trumpet studio), I cleared the calendar, sat down wherever I was and prayed…nothing was more important, I figured, than praying for my son during the most nerve racking and pivotal auditions of his young life. Charlie welcomed the prayers and after each audition we often discussed what I \’knew\’ about how the audition went and compared it with how it actually went for Charlie….was extremely cool that God revealed so much to me about what He was up to during Charlie\’s auditions. I honestly believe Charlie, at times, became an instrument the Holy Spirit played all the way straight through, even through the horn at the end of his hand, the trumpet. You may think I\’m nuts, but I believe Charlie actually ministered to and evangelized some of his audition judges by his playing. In case you\’re wondering…he was accepted to all the colleges he auditioned at, even the toughest one, Boston University (where he is attending now).
So, yesterday\’s desire to pray was just an extension of that commitment…figured it was the least (and probably the best) I could do for him. What was my response to God\’s \”Don\’t pray!\”? What did I do? I obeyed, I listened and trusted there was some amazing reason for me NOT to pray. It hurt like the dickens and was quite a struggle during that fifteen minutes of audition time. I sat before God with a heart full of bewilderment. I kept saying \”Why? Why would You deny me this? Hallo, I\’m MOM! How cruel! Yet, You aren\’t cruel, so this must be about something else…Like what?!\”
I may not have the complete answer here, as this continues to spin around inside of me, but this is what I understand right now: I need to let go of Charlie. He isn\’t my baby anymore, he is an adult forging into adult life, an adult surrendered to and being led by God. I need to not only physically but spiritually step out of the way and not enable him to rely on me for anything. I think my prayers for him during yesterday\’s audition would have been about me invoking the presence of the Holy Spirit into that time and space. The fact that I was denied praying for that leads me to believe that that job was Charlie\’s to do…as an adult out from underneath mom and dad\’s spiritual authority, he was to be the one responsible for inviting God into that audition, not me (which he may have done, I don\’t know). My prayers for him would have been nothing short of spiritual enablement. I would have been stepping into territory not mine, I would have been trespassing, exercising bad boundaries, sinning.
How did the audition go? Poorly, quite poorly. Nowhere near a reflection of how he is playing right now. I hurt when I heard his report. It was especially painful to witness his disappointment.
In response, I found I was welcomed by God to pray for Charlie for comfort, faith and hope in the face of it all. God let me pray that his faith would be strengthened and that new lessons would be learned. As Mom, I hadn\’t been totally side-lined, just in the spiritual enablement department. So be it, so let it be done.