Parenting in Spite of Fear, Part 2, Lynette Bowman
Parenting In Spite of Fear – part 2
Fear can grip us in various ways. I remember bringing my first son home and thinking, “Now what?” He was in his car seat sitting in our front room crying and my mom was nowhere nearby; the nurses who’d cared for him his first week in the hospital didn’t come home with us; and there were Scott and I. We looked at him, each other, shrugged our shoulders, and took him out of the car seat. I recall thinking it is odd how you have to take driving lessons to get a driver’s license, loads of college and tests to get a teaching credential, and even register your citizenship to prove you were born in the country in order to get a passport to leave! Yet, with no lessons, no coursework or tests, here I was as a new mom trying to determine why my helpless week-old newborn was crying. Fear struck.
I actually thought at the time Hannah was so wise leaving Samuel at the temple to grow up serving the Lord. At times of helplessness, I wondered what pastor I could leave him with to raise him. Surely one of them would take him to get past this stage, right? It worked out for Hannah and most assuredly the pastors’ wives were infinitely wiser than I; after all, they all had at least 3 kids a piece! Then the thought of not having my precious newborn in my daily life seemed more than I could bear, and greater heartache at that thought the fear overtook as I was looking down at him.
God had called me to be his mother; ordained it from before time began as a matter of fact. When I consider the details of my life, both great and insignificant, I am overwhelmed at how He orchestrated them all. And one of my most fond details is motherhood. My husband always points me to Matthew 6:26-33 when I fear.
Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘what shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘what shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. (ESV)
In the context of my parenting, these verses point to how God provides for the birds and will also provide for me, not just in the tangible ways of food and clothing, but also in equipping me for the calling of motherhood – of far greater import than the mundaneness of food and clothing. Further, the closing sentence reminds us to “seek first the kingdom of God”. If I seek God and His ways first, motherhood is less daunting, less fearful.
And, as the Lord would have it, my first son was followed by a second. There have been times of fear in raising them (to be covered in future blog posts), but rest assured, fellow parents, God is taking care of the birds; He has us covered too. Seek first the kingdom of God; He’s got this one.
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