Being a parent is not easy. I think that sentence is probably the most obvious one I’ve shared since I began writing this blog. We all know that taking care of another human being is both physically and emotionally draining, especially when they are born prematurely. There is always a new challenge to overcome. When your baby is an infant, you wonder if you should breastfeed or give formula. You deliberate over how long you should stay on maternity leave before heading back to work. You pray for a few uninterrupted hours of sleep before needing to provide another feeding. As your child gets older, there a host of new considerations. Which school should you enroll your child in? Is he or she developing normally? How should you handle the bully at school? In the teenage years, you wonder about their friends and where they are when they stay out past their curfew. I’ve even been told that parents of adult children never stop worrying about their safety when they are parents of their own little ones. It’s just how we’re wired. It’s a different, deeper kind of love.
How do we overcome our anxieties and embrace the beauty of parenthood? We can trust that God has our children in His care and that He won’t allow anything to happen to them that He hasn’t already approved. We must acknowledge that we don’t have as much control as we would like to believe we have. If nothing else, the global pandemic we’re experiencing should be teaching us that. We have to allow our children to grow and make their own mistakes. I realize that is definitely easier said than done. Most parents have an instinct to intervene when their child is in trouble; however, as our children grow older we must take our hands off of the proverbial bike and let them ride on their own.
We must also overcome anxiety by praying for their future. There are so many people and circumstances that can get in the way of our children’s destiny if we are not careful to speak words of protection and safety over their lives. We sometimes feel helpless when parenting, but one of the most effective, powerful things we can do is to pray for our children. God wants us to ask Him for guidance and we must yield to Him as the ultimate authority in our life.
We must also see Godly counsel from those who have walked the path we are currently on. This wisdom can come from our parents, fellow church members, or other mentors that God has placed in our life. Humility is the key to receiving the guidance we need in rearing our little ones. There is no shame in asking for help when we need it. God has given us these elders to provide an example of what to do and what not to do in certain cases.
The love of a parent for their child is all-encompassing and like no other on this earth. Most parents can attest to that and would do anything in their power to make sure their child is loved and care for. It’s essential that we trust God to take care of our children, that we pray to Him for guidance, and that we seek wise counsel for direction. If we do this, we can rest in the knowledge that our children will not only receive love and care from us but from our Creator as well.