Every day, I am watching my children’s naivete be stripped away from them, and it’s heart-breaking. They recently had to learn that sometimes people you care about will lie to you. They’ve also seen that not everyone will come clean, even when given the opportunity. My kids are in a long season of learning what not to do, how not to live their lives, and it hurts my heart to watch them have to go through this.
And yet. And yet they are learning lessons that I learned in my twenties, thirties and now forties. Will they have to relearn some of these things over the course of their lifetime? I’m sure they will. But even though I keep hearing myself say that it’s just too much for two teenagers to have to take in, when I let myself, I can rest just a bit.
I can rest because the God of the universe has this.
And you can rest just a bit too. No matter what circumstances are swirling around your children – everything from their first bad grade, to a teacher who doesn’t like them, to bullying, to sexting, to temptations with alcohol and drugs – God promises many, many things that we can hold onto for ourselves through these tumultuous parenting years but also that we can hold onto for our children, and teach them to hold onto themselves.
He will protect us in challenging times. Genesis 28
He will limit the quantity of pain we will face. Matthew 12
He will bring us healing when we are broken. Jeremiah 30
He will never abandon us. Hebrews 13
He will walk us through our fire. Isaiah 43
He hears us and will give us what we need. Jude 1
He has given us the Holy Spirit as our counselor and comforter. Acts 1
He will give us peace. John 14
He has adopted and chosen us as his children. Ephesians 1
He will turn all of our difficult times into something beautiful. Genesis 50, Romans 8
Yes, life can be very difficult. And yes, no matter how we plot, our children’s lives will be difficult, maybe even starting now. But sweet mothers, we can give our children over to God who loves them even more than we do, and we can teach them how to run to him when they’re hurting or scared. Because he will never leave them, or us.
If this post helped you, “Moving On as a Christian Single Mom” is for you, found here.
If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us.
1 John 1:8
Part of our job as parents is dealing with the sins of our children. Correcting misbehavior, admonishing them for mistakes in judgment and disciplining them for their own good make up a fairly big wedge on the parenting pie chart.
But I believe it’s also important that we never develop the impression that our children are the only ones who ever come up short in the character department. They need to know that the two grown-ups they know best in life confess their sins and need forgiveness, too.
Raising children, perhaps more than any other assignment in life, reveals your true character. The spiritual discipline of admitting your own sin is part of what makes your parenting real and genuine.
I’m not just talking about when your sin is something directed solely at your children–they also need to hear how you deal with things like covetousness or pride or retaliation. If you are honest about your own sins, they won’t feel so funny admitting them to you, talking about them and learning how you handle them.
Your children need to know they’re living with people who are totally dependent on the mercy and grace of the Lord Jesus Christ. They need parents who are not afraid to admit they fail and need the Savior’s forgiveness, just like they do.