January 13, 2015

Fear and Parenting

“The remarkable thing about God is that when you fear God, you fear nothing else, whereas if you do not fear God, you fear everything else.” —Oswald Chambers

I really could sum up this my entire parenting career with that quote... but I'll delve a bit deeper.  

Have you ever thought about fear being linked to disobedience?  And how does discouragement fit in?  

Let's look at some definitions that might not be in Websters:
Fear:  A lack of trust in God
Disobedience:  Not following God's will and commands for our lives
Discouragement: Being deprived of courage or confidence

What are your thoughts on these definitions?

Children's fears and adult fears are almost always centered around the same thing, fear of the unknown.  For little ones, this is usually monsters or trying new things.  For adults, we often focus on fears for our children, for our security and for our future.  But, how many of these fears would be diminished if you stopped looking for an answer within yourself and started to rely on God?

I'm a control freak, so I'm not saying this is easy.  With the benefit of hindsight, I can look back and see how God has blessed my life by not letting it go according to my plan.  But, even with that compelling evidence, I don't let go completely.

For me, a life free of fear means a life lived in obedience to God.  We've talked about obedience before and why we need God's grace.  Notice the similarity in these two verses:

"How can a young man keep his way pure?  By living according to Your word." Psalm 119:10 

"The Lord is my light and salvation.  Whom shall I fear?"  Psalm 27:1

And a third verse, just in case you are feeling discouraged and need to know where to go for help:

"I lift my eyes up to the hills.  Where does my help come from?  My help come from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth."  Psalm 121:1-2 

The answer is God.  It's always God. Following His commands, being ingrained in His word and trusting in His truths.  The best way for your children to learn to combat these three sins is to show trust in the Lord through your actions?

- How often do they see you pray?
- Do you talk to them about answered prayer?
- Do you talk to them about seeking God's will for your life and theirs?
- Do you demonstrate trust in God by tithing and living according to his commands?
- Do they see you read the Bible?

- Do you let them see you struggle, and tell them you go to the Lord for help?

Parenting is a tough gig and we have to be prepared.  I find so much comfort in knowing that God prepared me for this task long before I accepted it - I just have to remember to keep going back to HIM for the help I need!

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