I became a mother March 10 of this year. I remember watching this 14 year-old little blond, decked out in animal print, bounce out of a social worker’s car. I watched through the window trying to catch a glimpse of our answer to prayer. Here was our daughter that God had given us for an unknown amount of time to love and parent.
I had not personally felt the ferocious love of a mother that craves to protect and comfort. I was not prepared for the instantaneous worry that seemed to grip and claw at my new mother’s love.
I have found the worry of a mother to be industrious and creative, finding relentless angles to bombard my heart: Do I have what she needs? Will she come to know the Lord? Can she love us? Can I trust the system to make decisions on her behalf? How do I help her catch up in school? What does the future hold? Will she get to stay with us? When do I listen empathically and let her be where she is and when and how do I challenge thinking patterns and sin? When will the Lord provide good friends for her? How do we help her with her grief, brokenness, and trauma? How do we build trust? . . . and on . . . and on.
Whether you are a single mom, a foster mom, an adoptive mom, a young mom, an experienced mom, a new mom or any combination the unknown is an antagonist we must combat. The enemy seeks to weaken and distract us with worry. Worry and trust in God cannot coexist, and when worry is present peace will be absent.
In the middle of the night I have laid in bed with a knotted stomach and streaming tears clinging to Philippians 4:6-7 like a lone buoy in the middle of the ocean.
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Peace is not the absence of trial or conflict; it is the freedom of the mind from the distracting fixations of worry. However, peace is more than this and the meaning of peace is richer in the biblical context. Jesus says in John 14:27, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” The peace that Christ leaves us with is right relationship with God and the reality of spiritual blessings in our lives bestowed on all the adoptive daughters and sons of God.
"Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ." Romans 5:1
"Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places…" Ephesians 1:3
Do not confuse spiritual blessing with the world’s concept of blessing. I speak of the promises of God laid out in scripture. Eternal promises from our Faithful and True One that eclipse all our earthly unknowns and extinguish our ravenous worry.
We know that God works all things together for good for those who love him and are called according to his purpose (Rom. 8:28).
We know that God goes before us and will never leave us or forsake us (Deut. 31:8).
We know that our present sufferings are temporary and cannot compare to the future glory that will be revealed in us (Rom 8:18).
We know that God goes with us to fight for us against our enemies, giving us the victory (Deut. 20:4)
We know that his divine power will uphold us and that he has given us everything we need for life and godliness (2 Pet. 1:3)
We know that he sends forth his word to heal us and rescues us from destruction (Ps. 107:20).
We know that he generously gives wisdom to those who ask him (Js. 1:5)
We know he will provide for all our needs from his glorious riches, which have been given to us through Christ Jesus (Phil. 4:19)
We know greater is Christ in us than Satan who is in the world (1 Jn 4:4).
We must allow God’s promises to establish an unshakeable trust in him, which forges the way for peace. We must wield these promises as our spiritual weapons against worry. We must meditate on them and pray them over our children.
I cannot make my daughter happy. I cannot heal her sweet beautiful heart. I cannot take away her fears. I cannot make it better. I must trust God with her. We cannot be what only God can be for our children. Fire yourself from being your child’s savior. Hear Jesus speaking over you, “Do not let your heart be troubled. Do not be afraid. I see. I understand. I am here. I am in control. Trust me.”
"You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you because he trusts in you. Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord God is an everlasting Rock." – Isaiah 26:3-4