The year 2020 was such a chaotic and anxiety inducing time, and many of us saw first hand how it affected our children. The thoughts of “next year” and “when this passes” got us through the long days, yet here we are in 2021, staring down a new school year. A new year filled with much anxiety, fear, and even anger for some. Masks or no masks? Homeschool or public school? Car-rider or bus-rider?
If you are like me, every year I get super emotional about school starting, even without a world-wide pandemic staring us down. The start of school is a clear marker of the passing of time, a clear marker that my children are one year closer to being out of my house. And yes, I cry every year when they go to school. But this year feels different. There are so many opinions about what is right or wrong for our kids right now, and it is so easy to let worry and fear overcome us.
But fear and anxiety do not have to control us or our kids. I have talked to so many moms who are struggling with this like never before. Thankfully, God has not left us without encouragement for these struggles. Here are a few truths that have helped me face anxiety concerning school and my kids.
Our Kids have a Greater Father
We love to sing “Good, Good Father” in church on Sunday and praise Him for being such a good Father to us. But how often do we forget that He is also a good, good Father to our kids? I love the verse in Romans 8:32 that asks us –
“Since he did not spare even his own Son but gave him up for us all, won’t he also give us everything else?”
If I can trust God with the salvation of my soul, then surely I can trust Him with my kids. I am quick to forget that as much as I love my kids, our Father loves them so much more and so perfectly.
We have a Greater Truth
God never promised that we would never experience fear or anxiety, but the Scripture is filled with promises of God’s peace and presence when we are afraid. Psalm 56:3 says,
“When I am afraid, I will put my trust in you.”
This seems like such a simple truth, but sometimes we need to rehearse God’s truths over and over. For many of us, we need to speak this verbally, even over our children. When we show our kids that sometimes even mom and dad feel afraid but we got to God, we are teaching them such a valuable lesson. We need to speak truth over fear.
Someone Greater is in Control
We love control, especially as parents. But, if parenting has taught me anything, it’s that I’m not in control. This is more and more evident the older my kids get. When our kids leave our home to go to school, there is so much that we do not have control over. I love when Jesus tells the disciples not to be anxious about their life, and in doing so, He uses the creation around them – birds who are fed by the Father, lilies who are dressed by God. This is especially meaningful when we remember Colossians 1:17,
“And He (Jesus) existed anything else, and he holds all creation together.” We may not be able to control everything around us, but we can rest in knowing the One who is in control of all things.
Friends, aren’t we so thankful we have such a loving Father who tenderly cares for us all? I pray that in this season you find the strength to face whatever fears and anxiety you’re facing, feeling no shame, but looking to the One who controls all things.