I have arrived at the place in my motherhood journey where the well-meaning, cutesy parental sayings just aren’t cutting it. My boys are in middle school and high school now, and the things of the world have begun to crash down on us like a giant bucket of ice water. I thought it would get easier as they grew up, but the worry, or shall I say focus, simply shifts from one area to another.
For better or worse, their world is expanding at an alarming rate, and the things I spent years shielding them from are beginning to make an appearance. It’s a daunting task: get to them before the world does. To say I feel like I’m in a war for souls would not be an understatement.
I think every generation has an affinity for the way they were raised themselves and a slight aversion to what things have become. I find myself in awe of what these kids face on a day-to-day basis, and it’s almost paralyzing at times. Growing, inquisitive minds mixed with the loud, oftentimes wayward opinions of the world make for a difficult mix. I cry out to God for an explanation and an answer… what can I do to keep them on the straight and narrow? I’m a major doer. If I can read it to them, type it out, or plaster it on a mirror, I feel in control. My struggle is that I fool myself into believing I can make them choose God.
Lately, the Lord is just kind of yanking that rug right out from under me in His loving but direct way. I found an old prayer I wrote for them years ago and read it out loud: “Jesus, You are their Savior, not me.”
As silly as it may sound, that’s a hard thing for me to admit. I can’t control my way of having Godly teenagers. My role is actually so much bigger and better than that. I’m a cheerleader, an intercessor, and a prayer warrior. So, instead of preparing another well-intentioned lecture, I simply prayed out loud what was hiding in the deep corners of my heart. I cried out to God to remind me that He is God and I am not. These were some of the thoughts that came from my scared but hopeful heart:
- That they would joyfully chase after holiness over popularity.
- That the blessings of obedience would far outweigh the temptation of rebellion.
- That confession, forgiveness, and compassion would be a part of their daily lives toward themselves and others.
- That they would have a vision outside of themselves and a desire to join in on God’s plan for their lives.
These prayers are simple but profound. They extend out to all of us, not just our children. Thanks be to God that He has us all in the palm of His hand. We can gracefully and boldly unclench our fists from the wheel and remove ourselves from that driver’s seat.
There comes a time when scrolling through well-crafted self-help posts isn’t enough. We need the real deal, the meat of the Word, God Himself.
The world can be a scary place, but traveling the road together as believers is a great privilege. Don’t sit idly by while outside forces have their way with you or your loved ones. Know God’s Word and pray it. Shout it out loud. Let the heavens know to Whom you belong. We may not be able to control all the outcomes, but we serve a loving God who does. Being out of control has never felt so good.
This is an updated edition of a post originally published on scasefamily.com
Featured Image by Alvin Engler