As I watched her hop out of my car this morning, adorable bow in her hair, I could hardly stomach where we had been the night before. A place her frustrated anxiety led her where she could hardly come back. Feeling things and thinking things that are so untrue of her, it breaks my heart over and over again. It’s one thing to struggle with anxiety and depression yourself, it’s quite another to witness your child’s battle. It’s brutal. Heartbreaking. The only place I have found comfort is in the steadfast, solid, unchanging truth of God’s Word.
If you are a parent watching your child battle difficulties of any kind, these are a few truths God has shown me. Maybe they can bring you a bit of freedom and peace, they certainly have done that for me.
1. God loves your child even more than you do.
I have asked God hundreds of times why He is allowing my beautiful, kind, loving sweet girl to endure such trials and pain. I have begged him to remove this knot that seems to tie her up so tightly. It seems so unfair and I don’t understand. When it gets really bad, He whispers to me once again, “I love her more than you do, and I promise you, I will not let her go.” And even in my deepest hurt and mama gut wrenching pain, I know this to be true.
Isaiah 54:10 says, “Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,”says the Lord, who has compassion on you.”
Even if the entire world crumbles…if everything we love and cherish went away tomorrow…His love would remain. It is unshakable. Unfailing. It will not be removed. No matter what trials we endure or watch our children bear on already sagging shoulders, He will not remove His love. He will be faithful to His covenant of peace.
2. He makes things new.
My biggest fear is things won’t get better. That a hurting child will grow into a hurting adult. When the bad days seem to outweigh the good, and I realize yet again I cannot remove the shards of glass that poke at her heart, He reminds me He is greater. He can do things far beyond what I ask or imagine. He makes things new.
Isaiah 43:19 says, “See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.”
When hope tucks itself into the darkness and we can’t seem to pull it out we must remember who God is. He is in the business of healing and He isn’t going to abandon His children to their pain. He is making a way. He is doing a new thing even when we cannot see it.
3. You are their parent for a reason.
I’ll be honest. I see people around me that don’t love Jesus, people who have perfectly happy healthy children, and I wonder why my children have to suffer. My husband and I love Jesus, my children love Jesus, and yet I watch them suffer. At times I get angry and frustrated. I know God could fix it, but for whatever reason He choses not to. Why? I may never understand, but I do know this…God knit my children together inside of me for a reason. I am their mom and I will cherish them with all that is in me.
Psalm 139:13 says, “You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb.”
He has equipped my husband and I specifically with everything we need to parent our children, in the good times and the tough times. When I spend my energy being angry and bitter I do my children a disservice. But when I rejoice in their sufferings, thanking God that He has all of us exactly where we need to be, I am free to trust Him and enjoy even the most difficult and painful journeys.
4. As a result of this faith will grow, in you and in your family.
Colossians 2:6-7 says this, “And now, just as you accepted Christ Jesus as your Lord, you must continue to follow him. Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness.”
We have been taught the truth. It’s what sets us free to build our lives upon Him. If we trust Him in everything we do, with every step we take, with all our heart, soul, spirit, and mind we have no choice but to lean hard into His goodness. We follow Him not because we are seeking or looking for answers, because we may never have them. We follow because He is Lord. Because our roots have grown so deep into Him that He is our lifesource and strength. And no matter what we endure, no matter what pain our children go though, we know their roots will always lead them home. God is in them and they will not fail. And upon this…I can…you can…we can overflow with thankfulness – NO MATTER WHAT!
Maybe take a moment and listen to this song…let it wash over you…and remind you…even when all you can squeak out is a tearful breathy Hallelujah – these Hallelujah’s will be multiplied and His love will not be changed.