Does our repertoire of parenting skills need to include trust and obedience? Is it really something we can develop over time?
As I’ve said so often here before, “Raising children isn’t for the faint of heart!” It is the greatest gift, yet most difficult challenge in life — a place where we discover a love that moves mountains. And a part of that love is learning to let go. It’s learning to obey and trust in the Lord because our children belong to Him. He created them with love and care — after all, He’s counted every hair on their heads.
Emily Wood of Splashes of Joy is back this week finishing her 2-part post. I love the lessons she learns along her parenting trek through the unknown and often scary. The same kind of scary many of us face in each of our parenting journeys!
Why Are Trust and Obedience Powerful Parenting Skills?
A week after writing the first part of this 2-part post (check out the first part), we had to make a huge decision concerning our oldest son, John Lucas.
By the time John Lucas finished 3rd grade, I started thinking ahead to middle school. (Oh, the planner in me —a blessing and a curse!) After some prayer and discussion, my husband and I decided to move John Lucas to a Christian private school in our area for the small size and Christian focus. Even though middle school was still two years away, we went ahead and made the move so John Lucas would be able to get to know some of the kids.
Well, guess what! John Lucas is headed to sixth grade this year, but just before school started, we found out all the other boys in the class transferred to other schools. This left John Lucas as the only boy in his class!
My “perfect plan” felt like it was unraveling, and it left us facing an option I had been completely trying to avoid: John Lucas attending the traditional public school in our area.
There is nothing particularly wrong with this school. Several people from our church work there and most of the youth at our church attend this school.
The real reason I didn’t want John Lucas attending this particular school boiled down to one word: FEAR.
Fear that included:
- He isn’t ready for this!
- I’m scared he will see and hear things I don’t want him to see or hear.
- What if he gets bullied?
- I’m scared he won’t have any friends and will feel left out.
- He will be faced with the choice of getting involved with something he shouldn’t be involved with (drugs, sex, alcohol, etc.)
- What if he doesn’t have nice teachers?
- I am scared he will struggle with self-esteem issues.
(OK. I better stop there. LOL. This list could go on and on!)
Some of these fears and “what-ifs” stem from all that we have gone through with John Lucas. Some of them stem from my own negative middle school experience. And then others come from walking alongside of so many teenagers in youth ministry.
With all of these negative thoughts swirling in my mind, my instinct is to protect John Lucas and say, “No, we’re just going to try to keep him from all these things that I’m scared might happen.”
The Lord has been speaking to my heart for quite a while about completely trusting the Lord with the lives of my boys. And over the past month or so, I have repetitively read this verse:
For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline. -2 Timothy 1:7 NLT
That is just it. I recognize that these thoughts I am having are purely out of fear and timidity – which are NOT from the Lord. And even if some of these fears are valid concerns, I have to give them to the Lord and trust that HE will take care of it.If we do some self-checking, we sometimes find fear is controlling our parenting choices. And that isn't good ... Click To Tweet
Obedience and Trust as Parenting Skills
Please understand, this post is NOT about where to send your child to school. That is completely between you and the Lord.
This post is, however, about the role of obedience and trust in our set of parenting skills.This post is about the role of obedience and trust in our set of parenting skills. #parenting #faith Click To Tweet
There are times God asks us to do something that seems scary … specifically with regard to our children.
Maybe it is …
Taking a new job and moving to a new town.
Answering the call to the mission field and moving overseas.
Moving your kids to a new school.
Deciding to homeschool.
Sending them off to college.
Deciding to foster and/or adopt.
Or, you know what? You may simply find it scary to send your kids to school each day with the headlines you see on TV.
No matter what it may be, we have to decide whether or not we truly trust the Lord with our children.There are times God asks us to do something that seems scary … specifically with regard to our children. #parenting #faith Click To Tweet
I love what Bob Goff says in his book, Everybody Always:
“Playing it safe and waiting for assurances in our lives isn’t necessarily bad; it just isn’t faith anymore. “
Playing it safe doesn’t move us forward or help us grow; it just finds us where we are and leaves us in the same condition it found us in. God wants something different for us. He never sets a goal for us to come back the same. He hopes we return more dependent on Him. I’m not saying everything needs to be risky in our lives, but we’d be well-served if a few more things were riskier in our faith.
Step of Faith
John Lucas is officially attending the public middle school here in just a few days. (If you see a 4’11 woman, holding a paper bag, slightly hyperventilating, on the first day of school — it may be ME.)
I don’t know what the next three years hold (man, I wish I did). Just like my wild river ride I told you about last week, there may be rapids and bumps along the way. I DO know, though, the Lord will be alongside us every step of the way.
God knows our kids. I mean…He REALLY KNOWS our kids! And He loves our kids….more than we do! (Which is truly hard to fathom!) So we must trust that God is bigger than all our fears and that HE is in control.
Even when we don’t have all the details of how it is all going to work out.
Emily is the granddaughter, daughter, and wife of a pastor. She now writes at Splashes of Joy where, through her experiences with infertility, fostering, adoption, and giving birth, she shares the faithfulness of the Lord. Her hope and prayer is that she can share what she has learned (and continues to learn) through her unexpected path into motherhood. You can connect with Emily on her blog and through Instagram.
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Have You Read Our Story of Letting Go?
Through our adoption journey, God brilliantly showed us the power of living surrendered. We discovered the peace that comes when we walk in God’s will and trust wherever He takes us. However, finding this kind of peace doesn’t usually come along golden paved roads. It comes along the broken ones. But along those roads, we discover our purpose in life — what God had in mind for us all along.Summer Sale!! Surrendered Hearts! Our story of hope - of learning to surrender ... because we all need the help in letting go of what isn't ours to hold. #surrenderedheartsbook #hope Click To Tweet
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