Throwback ThursdayAre you familiar with the phrase Throw Back Thursday? It started on social media as a way to pay tribute to someone or some event from the past. People love nostalgia. The photo is usually accompanied by a hash tag (#) of either #TBT or #ThrowbackThursday.

This morning, I pulled up my photos on my phone to see if there was one I wanted to post for Throwback Thursday. Suddenly, my eyes started leaking and it couldn’t be stopped. As I looked at picture after picture of my children, it hit me, today is a the beginning of a new season, a new way of life. Today, for the first time ever, I’m an empty nester.

Everyone who is in this stage of life seems to love it, after they’ve adjusted to it. They’ve said things to me like,

Best time of your life.”

You’re gonna love it.”

Well, I hope their right, but this morning I’m not loving it and this is definitely not the best time of my like. It’s pretty stinky this morning.

Thankfully, God knows me well. He’s been preparing me for this day, bit by bit. Last week, as I walked down the beach with my youngest trying to eek every last minute of time together before college, a butterfly flew in front of me and circled around me a couple of times before flying off. I don’t recall ever seeing a butterfly on the beach before. I smiled, because even if no one else noticed, God was sending me a personal message.

A butterfly is beautiful and can sore to great places. There are few limitations on where it can go. A caterpillar (which my youngest used to call a callerpiter) is very slow and limited to where it can go. While it is all snug, warm and safe in its cocoon, it isn’t meant to stay there. It’s meant to come out and face the world, explore new places and fulfill its destiny. Going from being a caterpillar in a cocoon to a soaring butterfly takes work. There’s a bit of a struggle to break free, but it’s worth it in the end.

God reminded me He created my children and knows every detail about them [Psalm 139]. He has great plans for them, but also for me [Jeremiah 29:11]. And while this may not be an easy transition, it’s going to be good [Psalm 30:5].

I have no idea what this next phase of life is going to look like for me or my children. But I do know the one who holds the stars in their place and I know He’s trustworthy [Psalm 8:3, 2 Samuel 7:28].

What’s your Throwback Thursday?