Abiding Monday: Fraught With Worry
Worry has been following me around lately. I know how to combat it – I posted about praying for peace mere weeks ago – yet I am still being pestered with a fear about this or a worry about that. It is so annoying! And it’s a domino effect this time around; when one thing is resolved, another issue arises, giving my weary soul minimal rest in between.
At the moment, my worry is for my son. He’s kinda accident-prone. He’s a toddler, so saying he trips up on his own feet doesn’t mean that much. But he does. Trip up on his own two feet, that is. Regularly. This has resulted in some pretty nasty bumps on his head. (People actually look surprised when they see he is bump-free.) Last week, he fell on his face again, and the bump is an ugly combo of red, purple, blue and yellow. I can’t tell you how many times I have prayed over his little head, yet I cannot shake the worry that comes with being his mom. I seriously break down in sobs whenever he hurts himself.
Max Lucado’s latest book, Fearless, has a chapter about worrying for our kids’ safety. He says,
We tend to forget this fact, regarding our children as “our” children, as though we have the final say in their health and welfare. We don’t. All people are God’s people, including the small people who sit at our tables. Wise are the parents who regularly give their children back to God (58).
Lucado says we have two choices when faced with our childrens’ struggles (health or otherwise): to despair over what can happen, or to believe in Jesus’ power to love and care for them. Now, I realize that a bump on my son’s head is small potatoes compared to what else can happen to him – maybe compared to what has happened in your child’s life. Yet the despair I have felt is very real, and dealing with it is not easy.
As one might expect, prayer is the key remedy.
Prayer is the saucer into which parental fears are poured to cool. Jesus says so little about parenting, makes no comments about spanking, breast-feeding, sibling rivalry, or schooling. Yet his actions speak volumes about prayer. Each time a parent prays, Christ responds. His big message to moms and dads? Bring your children to me. Raise them in a greenhouse of prayer (60).
I believe in this advice, and I have been stubbornly giving my fears about my son’s injuries to Jesus, again and again, each time I feel them. Even though I wish I could put the boy in a plastic bubble and roll him everywhere in a cocoon of safety, I turn to God to increase my trust in Him. I involve my kids in this praying, too, saying prayers aloud while Eli plays and inviting both of my children to pray aloud for his head during bedtime prayers.
If my worries are going to persist, my prayers must persist as well.
Jesus, thank you for keeping watch over our children as they come and go. Thank you for standing beside us as a protective shade. Thank you for being our help. We depend on you. Amen.
What Psalms comfort you during your time of worry (mine was paraphrased above, Psalm 121)? Is your prayer time proportionate to the time you spend worrying? How do you work through your fears?