You may have read the title of this blog post and thought, “Well, yeah, I trust God with my kids. He’s God. He created them.” Done. Move on.
May I ask you to stay with me a minute longer?
This was totally me. I knew in my head that God gave my children to me; they are gifts from him. I know he loves them more than I can, because he loves with perfect, unfailing love. I know all of this and believe it.
But let me ask you something. How did you react when your child faced a major struggle or a sickness? Was it easy for you to say you trusted God with your kids then? Or did your inner Mama Bear spring into action?
For the past year, my oldest has been struggling with anxiety. It interferes with his schooling, his friends, and our family life. Things that are easy for other kids are hard for him. Sometimes, we even wonder if he has enough fun.
These are all things a mom does not want to see her child walk through.
In light of these struggles, I found myself taking on the task of fixing things. I researched strategies to help him when he felt overwhelmed. I worried. I analyzed. I stewed. I prayed all the time.
But walking through these struggles with my son this year, I realized something. That while I was crying out to God for help, begging him to help my son, I realized I was holding on to this issue with clenched fists. I prayed and prayed, but I did not give this worry over to God.
I think it is natural for moms to do this. From the time our children are born, we are their person. We keep them alive. We agonize over their sleep, their eating, their health, you name it. Our children become part of our hearts, our minds, our souls. I’ve even seen studies that prove children change the biological make up in a mom’s brain. A mom is designed to nurture life at all costs. This is how God made us.
Even though we are designed to care for our children, we are not designed to be their God. Our children belong to God; they are just entrusted to us for a short time. God wants moms to depend fully on him, so we can teach our children to do the same.
It is so hard to open our hands and give our children back to God. Our kids are our most prized possessions. They are precious to us. They are part of us. But the truth is, they are God’s prized possessions. They are precious to him. They are part of him. Just read this passage from Psalm 139.
You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it. You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion, as I was woven together in the dark of the womb. You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed. How precious are your thoughts about me, O God. They cannot be numbered! I can’t even count them; they outnumber the grains of sand! And when I wake up, you are still with me! (Psalm 139:13-18, NLT)
This goes for us and our kids. God knew them before we did. In fact, he knew every day of their lives! He thinks about them more than we do. He knows them inside and out. He never leaves them, not even when they go to bed for the night. Because of God’s character, his omnipresence, his unfailing love, he is able to care for our kids perfectly.
God cares about what we care about. 1 Peter 5:7 tells us to, “Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.” But let me be clear. When we give our worries about our kids to God, we are not guaranteed the outcome we desire. God is not a genie waiting to grant our wishes. Just like in our own lives, God allows our kids to walk through trials because he is teaching them something or preparing them for something in the future. More often then not, he is teaching us something as we guide our kids through their struggles. I mean, just look at what I learned because my son is going through anxiety!
God began a good work in our kids (Philippians 1:6), and he is going to carry that out until they meet him in heaven. We can know this. But here’s the blessing in this whole thing: we may not be guaranteed a favorable outcome, but we are guaranteed God’s peace.
When we give our worries and concerns to God, we experience God’s peace in the midst of difficult circumstances. Jesus said, “I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid” (John 14:27). We get the gift of peace. We can rest in the truth that God loves our kids and cares for them immensely. They are his favorite. They are his treasure.
So tell the Mama Bear inside you to rest. God’s in control in the midst of struggles, and he is a good, good Father.