I think every parent thinks along the same line when they are taking their baby home from the hospital. “Uh, wait, I just take this person home? Is there some manual I can have??? Is this for REAL?!”.
I remember being so madly in love with my baby yet so overwhelmed. As a new mom, your world just changes in the blink of an eye. My old bathrobe (which I never wore) was my daily outfit. Cereal became dinner. Two hours of sleep could carry me through for a looong time.
My worries of diaper rash and SIDS has subsided. I now have new worries. Worries of my daughter trying to stand up against our coffee table and smacking her head into the corner. Worries of her taking too big of a bite and choking on something. Worries of her saying “no” all too soon. Worries that someday she will be a rebel of a teenager…whaaaat… hold on I just got way ahead of myself.
No, but for real, worry consumes me much of the time, and I often worry about how I am going to shape this little person as she becomes a bigger person.
See, parenting is SUCH a big deal. I hear people all the time talk about their childhood and relationship with parents. It’s no big mystery that parenting plays a giant role into a child’s outlook on life and ability to make it in the world.
So, my current worry has been on how I will conquer the role of parenting.
Thank heavens I stumbled upon the book, Grace Based Parenting by Dr. Tim Kimmel.
So, as I learn about parenting I thought I would blog about it for others out there on the same path of learning how to parent their kids. I thought I would open up about this all too important topic that I am extremely interested in.
One of the first subjects he talks about is worry- and how worry can literally turn a well-intentioned parent into a parent who can wreak havoc on their children. Fear, while very normal- can be used against us and often for the wrong reasons.
Worry can drive us mad. It can rob our joy and make us neurotic. Don’t get me wrong, I think worry comes out of good intentions. It is just that worry itself is illogical, pointless, a giant waste of time, and very telling of a lack of trust in God.
I spend much of my time worrying, which is why focusing on this is good food for thought for me.
Jesus states in Matthew 6:25-34
So, the first part of this parenting series I am working on has to do with self-reflection of my pattern of worrying. Jesus actually says do not worry about life itself. How can worrying add anything to our lives?
But he does add one more thing further down:
33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.
It seems to me that the answer to the question of “how do I stop worrying” is summarized above. Seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. What things? I think those things are the things like the wisdom and understanding of the amazing amount of grace we have been given by a generous God who loves us enough to sacrifice everything for us that we may live! All things means grace, mercy, the fruit of the spirit. Love, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. And isn’t that the kind of parent I want to be? One who is seeking daily for God’s wisdom in all things and is filled with grace, love, and patience no matter what comes my way? I want to be clear minded and able to deal with the issues and challenges parenting will bring me, and respond in a wise and gracious manner so that I can help my child grow in strength and security. This means I must get help from God, daily, because on my own I am unable to respond with wisdom and grace. The next chapters seem to deal with HOW to still discipline in love and grace and how grace actually goes hand in hand with boundaries, which is loving for children. But that is for later :).
As I grow in my understanding of how loved I am by God, I am also able to grow in faith and therefore worry less. Beginning out my parenting as a mom who does not fear gives me great leverage to use that energy for more productive things. Which I will get into during the next parenting post. I am getting so ahead of myself and so excited about this knowledge and just hope I can let it sink in and take some roots…
Until next time!