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Why We Can Turn Our Parenting Worries Over to a Trustworthy God

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Why We Can Turn Our Parenting Worries Over to a Trustworthy God

 

 

 

Listen to an audio recording of this blog post here:


{In these days of uncertainty and worry with COVID-19, I have made slight edits to this post which was originally published at The Courage. I pray it encourages parents with children of all ages. I know worry comes but I also know it comes from a place of love.}

The nurse says to me: “You’re pregnant.”
I think: “Breathe, Andrea.”
I also think: “Now what?”

In the early 90’s, pregnancy tests weren’t known for their reliability and I couldn’t afford one anyway. So, to save time and money, I went to my doctor’s office on my lunch hour to confirm what I believed to be happening inside of me.

The nurse confirmed. I was indeed growing a human. My drive back to work felt like an out of body experience. My thoughts and feelings flip-flopped between utter disbelief and giddy excitement.

Yikes!
I was going to have my first baby!
I was going to be a mom!

On the drive, I sneezed. My immediate reaction was, “Oh no! Is that okay? Will sneezing hurt the baby?” Silly, I know, but I was 23-years-old and clueless. Everything in me wanted to protect this gift. It was at that very moment my “worry meter” began to rise.

Fast forward to all types of situations when my worry meter was in the red, such as:

Sleepovers
Getting in cars without me
First day of school
Second day of school
Third day of school… you get the idea
Camps
Mission trips
Illnesses and surgeries
Worldly influences
Media
Reading books
First jobs
Dances
Cell phones
Internet use
Making their own food choices

Then came events like 9/11. It was all I could do to not go full-out mama bear, barge into their classrooms, scoop them up and bring them home to stay with me forever and ever. Amen.

Then…

Driving
Dating
College… oh my!

After an international move and with an ocean between my oldest daughter and me (she survived the pregnancy sneeze, by the way), she moved into her dorm in Texas while I was in Singapore caring for my other two children. The “what if’s” were abundant. Tears and fears were my constant companion.

My son and I discussed a religion class he was taking at school. His dad and I parented him, as we did all of our children, to witness our faith but to own his. That meant that he would need the space to seek God and come to terms with his own belief system. It was worrisome for me to think that he could be influenced to question the God that I hoped he would place his full trust in one day.

I remember when my youngest daughter was closing her high school chapter, she mentioned that she didn’t know why anyone still ate McDonald’s. I felt a wave of relief. My hard work as Chef Mom had paid off! This is the kid, who when she was four, we thought would surely turn into a mystery meat chicken nugget. When she moved into her first apartment, I sat in my car alone and cried out to God to keep my baby safe because I knew I couldn’t.

My worry meter was out of control. I had to find a way to handle this complete lack of control over my children’s safety and well-being.

Now, with all three of my children married, owning their own faith, and growing their own families, I look back and realize even when I thought I was in control, I wasn’t. All three have survived so many experiences that I had no control over.

From the moment the cord is cut, the release begins. “Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are children born in one’s youth.” Psalm 127:4 NIV

Psalm 127:4 NIV

I recently found myself wondering whether God worries about us, his children. It didn’t take long for me to come to the conclusion that he doesn’t.

God doesn’t worry about us because He knows the story.

We can turn our parenting worries over to a trustworthy God because he knows the first and last page of our lives and every page in between. Colossians 1:17 offers comfort in knowing that “He is before all things, in Him all things hold together.”

Why do we worry about our children? We worry because we’ve placed our trust in something or someone other than God – the only one who is trustworthy.

We place more trust in ourselves and what little control we think we have over our children’s stories. We think we know what should be written on the pages of their lives. It makes sense really. We trust what can be seen rather than what is unseen. Faith is hard, especially when it comes to our children.

We worry because we put more trust in our limited knowledge and abilities over what we want for our children than God’s infinite knowledge and abilities over what He has already planned for our children. Their story is already written and we get to be a part of it!

Truthfully, I think I will always worry. But I must focus on the fact that my children belonged to God before He gifted them to me. While the “what-if’s” are abundant, so is his provision of love, mercy, and grace.

Be it, school, driving in cars with boys, crises of faith, or global tragedies or pandemics, God is infinitely and eternally better at taking care of my children than I am.  

For further reflection, watch this:

About Andrea

A stumbling pilgrim and gatherer of stories. Stories about Jesus and how He gave His life for me, sustains me and redeems me ... even though.

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