These are crazy times we are living in. The stories we hear happening in our world daily have in the past had me questioning whether I wanted to bring kids into the world. I picture their future and it’s kind of overwhelming and caused me plenty of anxiety. But here is why. Because I have been picturing their future without God.
I shared this sentiment before but it bears repeating. Worry is imagining our future without God. It’s temporary atheism. But when I picture God in my future, I do not fear because I see Him at work.
So as we face lots of questions about our future, as we elect a new president, as we raise lots of questions about Supreme Court judges and our countries safety, I’ve found peace in praying this specific thing:
Lord, may my kids have such a deep, personal relationship with you, that the circumstances of their world, pale in comparison. I pray Lord that they would learn from an early age that joy and peace are not found because of everything going right in their life, but that they can experience those things no matter what because of you. That even when trials come, instead of feeling the sting of rejection, persecution, fear or even death, that they would have their eyes so fixed on you, that all they experience is your joy, love, peace and life.
It’s scary to think about these things, but I think about how in certain hard times in my life, I have felt the presence of Jesus in such a real way that it was not at all the same as going through it without God. When I’m going through hard times with God, they have been incredible seasons of growth that I wouldn’t trade for all the seemingly easy or good days. I am finding peace knowing that even though my kids will face hard things, they can walk through them with God which makes all the difference in the world.
If our desire is to raise kids that look more like Jesus, that pursue holiness, why do we spend the majority of our time focused on praying for a comfortable life? I’m all squirmy thinking about that too, y’all. I spend a good deal of time praying for their future careers, finding the right school for them, their health and friends. I think all of this is important. And it’s uncomfortable for me to confront these thoughts myself. I want every good thing for my kids. I don’t want them to experience hardships at all, but I desire God’s will more than I desire my own. And I trust God’s plan more than I trust my own.
We talk a lot about how our joy cannot be dependent on our circumstances yet, we are obsessed with creating the perfect future for our kids and neglecting preparing hearts that can experience joy and peace despite their circumstances.
Do I want to actively pursue giving my kids the best future possible? Of course!! A resounding yes!! But I also want to spend incredible energy on preparing their hearts.
Can we have our kids so prayed up for their future, that no matter the shape of the country, the shape of their hearts is unburdened by our own desire for their comfort? That instead they are filled with the Holy Spirit so much that no matter what they face, they are endlessly rejoicing in our Savior?
No matter who is elected on November 8, your kid has a bright future. Don’t dim their light with assumptions that because things may not be easy, that they won’t live a full life of peace, joy and the pursuit of holiness. Instead here are four things we can be doing now to prepare them:
- Be their advocate now. Pray for them. Not just for the circumstances of their future, but their heart for God.
- Cultivate in them now hearts that find joy in spite of circumstances.
- Let them witness in your own life joy and peace in spite of circumstances.
- Spend less time worrying about their future and more time actively pursuing ways to make it better. I’m not completely crazy. This is still important. Let’s spend less time on facebook reading all the horrible news stories (and every terrible comment!) becoming paralyzed by it and figure out some ways to actually make a difference.
Am I the only one who has missed this?? Or have you put more faith in the circumstances in their future than in the God of their future too?
I needed to read this so badly this morning. Our eldest is preparing for post-secondary and has her first boyfriend, and our youngest is in the midst of puberty and all the joys and growing pains that come along with that precious season. I am a natural worrier. This sinful.. disobedient habit makes me feel gross. I want to honor God’s will for our girls. I want to trust Him with my whole heart, and with the lives of our daughters. I want to prepare their hearts. Thank you Val.
Oh girl! I know there are things I worry about during this baby/toddler stage but the adolescents and teen years freak me out a bit!! This prayer has given me so much peace though. Praying for you and those girls now Julia!
I am grateful for your prayers Val… and for your blog, book and journals. All of which have drawn me closer to our God. God bless you & your sweet family!