Parenting: You Can Trust God In the Storms
While on a ministry/mission trip to Zimbabwe, Africa, I was reminded of the many struggles parents endure while raising their children. Whether you are struggling with a child who is ill; one facing challenging life situations or you don’t have enough resources to meet their daily needs, Jesus is the answer; (Philippians 4:19 NIV) says, “And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.”
In Zimbabwe, we visited a poor hospital and while walking through the wards, I came across this little girl who was about eight years old. She went from one person to another smiling and saying hello, and she was constantly singing. She appeared healthy and so very joyful. When I asked her if she knew Jesus, her answer was a resounding, “yes.” I then asked her to sing a song for me and her song brought a smile to all of our faces. Her parents watched her with smiles but you could see the sadness and pain in their eyes. I commented to the parents that their daughter appeared healthy and asked why she was in the hospital. The parents told me she was there because one of her legs had been amputated and it had developed an infection. Throughout all her health challenges and the amputation, she never lost her joy or her smile. Her spirit was infectious and contagious. Although there were many sick children in the ward, the joy of this one small child lit up the entire place. I pondered to myself then, and even now, how often I’ve lacked joy when facing difficult seasons. It is hard at times to find a smile, much less to encourage others. This young girl was facing a life time of challenges in a country where so many healthy people struggle to survive, yet she embraced her difficulties by holding onto her joy.
Today, there are so many parents, who struggle to care for a sick child; to feed and clothe their children and to keep–going from day-to-day. I think about the many times over the years I have emptied my cupboards to help single parents who could not feed their children; prayed for a wayward child on drugs and comforted parents whose children committed suicide.
The struggles of parenting are real and sometimes painful but Jesus is your anchor in the storms.
In my new book, , I shared the story of Elizabeth in Luke 1. She struggled to conceive a child, John the Baptist. Elizabeth was a descendant of Aaron, the High Priest, and her rich heritage meant she had direct access to God, yet she struggled. She was married to a priest but still had to pray and wait on God’s perfect timing in her life. We can concede struggles are great equalizers in people’s lives and no one is exempt. They affect the just and the unjust; the rich and the poor alike and struggles are color blind. Like birth and death, we will all experience them in one form or another. Although many parents are facing some devastating struggles, you can be an Overcomer because Jesus is right there with you. He is on your side and is fighting for you. He was with Elizabeth during her years of struggles, pain and shame, and he is also with you.
Jesus wants you to know that he is in the storms with you. Even though the journey is hard and painful at times, your boat will not sink, he will calm the storms in your lives and anchor you when the difficulties in your families are overwhelming you. (Psalm 37:25) says, “I was young and now I am old, yet I have never seen the righteous forsaken or their children begging for bread.” Will you anchor your hope firmly in God during these hard times? Remember, he is still healing today and hears your prayers for your children. The same Jesus who fed the thousands because he was moved with compassion concerning their needs, he feels that same degree of compassion over your needs as well. He is your answer when you feel like you are swimming uphill and you will not make it. You will be victorious because he cannot fail and he will not let you fail. Let this scripture steady you in the parenting storms. (Numbers 23:19-20), “God is not human, that he should lie, not a human being, that he should change his mind. Does he speak and then not act? Does he promise and not fulfill? I have received a command to bless; he has blessed, and I cannot change it.”
God has sent a command out to bless your family and nothing and no one can stop or change this command. He will indeed bless you. Look up your redemption draws near.
Father, I thank You that Psalm 37:26 says, the seed of the righteous is blessed and therefore my children are blessed. Psalm 28:7 declares that the Lord is my strength and my shield, my heart trusts in Him, and I am helped. Thank You that You have given me strength to provide for my children and to be a shield around them. I thank You that 1 King 17:13 tells me not to be afraid but to do as You say and that You will bless my efforts. I know you will bless my efforts on behalf of my children. Psalm 37:5 tells me to commit my ways to the Lord and to trust also in Him and He will act. Father, I commit my children to You, and I trust You knowing that You will do what is best for them. You will prosper and bless them with long healthy lives, in Jesus name.