Thursday, October 9, 2014

Parenting Out of Hope, Not Fear

Are you sometimes astounded by how hard parenting is? Frequently I feel that way, but at the same time, I love being a mom. Even on my worst days as a mom, I never feel like quitting or changing jobs, perhaps because there's much grace showered on the Christian mother.

Sometimes we forget, so preoccupied are we by the hard work.

The Holy Spirit is always there.

So many times He grabs me and says, gently: "Do it this way instead." No, it's not audible like God communicated with Abraham, Moses, Samuel or Jonah, but I know who it's from, just the same

Recently, during an online conversation with another Christian mom, I read her words: "Most of our fears are just that--fear. They never materialize." This spoken from a mom suffering from PTSD due to her own mother's drinking and the effects it had on her life and safety.

She wrestled with fear for years and won those words, and by absentmindedly typing them to me, she shared one of her graces and it became one of mine. I honestly wasn't aware of how much fear I harbored regarding my children's futures--until God's grace showed me that I'm not called to parent out of fear, but out of hope.

Hope. What a beautiful, God-inspired word.

Now when a slight worry or fear enters my mind about a child's future or about the condition of a child's heart, the new idea enters my head and the fear/fret cycle freezes, like a still picture of my former self.

It's just a whisper of a reminder now: "Most of our fears are just that...fear. They never materialize." 

"You're fearing, not hoping. Turn around again."

Grace, showered on me and my children in the form of a idea. The Holy Spirit himself made it more than a sentence--he made it a lifestyle. A lifestyle of hope.

Hope is the absence of fear--serving as a filter through which the Christian can live each day obedient, strong, courageous, other-serving.

I am transformed; I am transforming, and there are many issues yet to have their turn, in which the Holy Spirit will have His way with me, leaving me wiser, lighter, fuller in joy.

And it's wonderful to remember that this same grace is available for my children. The same Holy Spirit lives in them, I am fairly certain, and he will lead them as he leads me, to quiet waters, to paths of righteousness, for his name sake.


Psalm 23

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.

He makes me to lie down in green pastures: he leads me beside the quiet waters.

He restores my soul; he leads me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for you are with me; your rod and your staff they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.

No comments: