My heart is mixed this morning. I just drove Nathan to the airport to return to Hollywood, where he is seeking employment and ultimately a platform where He may take light, ideals and values that can inspire others to follow Him and His kingdom ideals. I will miss him, but on the other hand, I believe in his dreams and want him to be out there, so he can move ahead on his adventure, on the road that God has prepared for him.
Someone recently wrote me and said, "You know, Sally, you should address legalism. There are people who come to your conferences who come just because you are "Sally Clarkson", who would probably, behind your back, disapprove of your children being in Hollywood seeking a career, or your daughter traveling all over the world instead of staying home, and tending to your kitchen duties, or a myriad of other ways in which you fall short of their rules."
I learned long ago, not to pay attention to what I call, "Job's friends." (Those people who are free to give an opinion about your life and what you are doing wrong, and about not following all the "rules", when all along, God is at work in great ways.")
But, my audience is the Lord. And He put on our hearts to raise children who would take His kingdom messages into the world to bring light to dark places. So, we sought God, not formulas, or the approval of groups of people. And oh I pray we will seek Him and His ways the rest of our lives.
Now, back to Nathan
His time home was very wonderful with lots of great memories made and lots of stress in seeking to help him. I now know better what the term starving-artist means--he has even lost 40 pounds trying to save money by not buying too much food, and to become more disciplined in his health!
And now, he is a perfect height and weight to pursue some modeling jobs to help make ends meet. And so he needed a photographer.
Imagine me, a frumpy, getting older mama, pulling pictures off our walls to give him a blank wall; buying outfits at sales, taking almost a hundred pictures with my little camera all over the house; telling him to put his head up, down, pulling his jacket down and up, to help him get a few new "fashion" shots. All for the hopes of helping him to get into the market. All stores need models--Walmart, Kohls, Foleys, and thousands of other clothing stores, etc., and it could be a way to pay his bills as he waits for God to open the doors for His life, calling, future.
Meanwhile, he is writing and recording songs, working at his church with the college students, writing a book to reach his generation, working, working every day--hoping that His God will open impossible doors. I believe God is going to use this passionate, faithful, dreaming young man to influence his generation. I know the road will be uphill, but I would rather him attempt it than to succumb only to those things he can accomplish in his own efforts.
As a child, he was very challenging--just like me, my mother tells me! Threw fits as a young baby--tantrums--just like I did, so my mother says. I spent hours on my knees pondering the "answers" to parenting because of him! He has provided most of my parenting examples, and almost everyone says, "Oh, I have a Nathan!" And if they have one, they are most blessed.
Sarah once said, "It is a shame Nathan gets punished for saying the things the rest of us are thinking."
He was verbal and very outspoken, wiggly, funny, darling and captivating and infuriating all at the same time--always challenging us and making us keep a tight rein on our integrity. He was adhd, ocd, odd--another way of saying that God made him an artist--one for His glory, who moved to the beat of a different drum.
I believe it now and wish I had exhibited more patience and grace with my "out of the box" child. God had a plan for him and gave him a passionate heart from the moment he came out of the womb. When he was 15, I realized that he was so multitalented--a performer, a spokesman, musician, photographer, actor--not made for the normal academics--but for a bigger world. He was just like me--:)
And so I began supporting his dreams--for who God had made him to be, not necessarily who I thought he should be.
And so I send Nathan back to Hollywood, because it is where God has begun to open doors for him. I don't have the right to tell my children to stay home and be near me, afterall, I gave them over to Him, to use for His glory.
And so I stay at home, "warrioring" for him before the throne of heaven every day, sending emails and texts of scripture and encouragement, and waiting hopefully for my Father to show Him His faithfulness to him as his very own loving, listening, faithful, generous heavenly Father.
I would so appreciate it if you would whisper a prayer for him today, that God would bring favor, encouragement and the courage to hold on to his ideals and convictions! And that God would also see fit to pay his monthly bills! :) If anyone is looking to employ a great, idealistic, talented, spiritually passionate, "out of the box" young man in Southern California, I just might know where to find one!
Our home farewell!
Out of the box, part 2 in a couple of days.........