We had prayed so fervently to have children and become parents. It took awhile and this time was so very hard. Then in 1998, it happened! Our first born came and rocked our selfish worlds and brought my Chris and me into a place of grateful and rest , knowing that God has our first-born son (and the next three!) in His ever faithful Hand. We would have 3 more children over the course of the next eight years.
But one question that has met me on the pavement every single day is this one. Will I be a brave mom?
You see, Oprah started it–feeding my fears daily, as my college roommate and I watched her show every day after class. I began to realize that it’s a big, scary world out there with big, ominous bad gals and guys. So bringing a child into and raising a child in this world? It seemed awfully daunting. Even today, the news channels will take up where Oprah left off.
And I know! I know that the Lord is in control. I know this!
But often I do not act like I know. In fear, I begin to try to control. And that is where my parenting can go off the rails.
When Kay Arthur looked at me that day in Denver at Deeper Still 7 1/2 years ago and called me a valiant warrior, I took it as a word from the Lord to my heart. He knew that I had a strong HOLD of fear. And courage and trust in Him alone would make all the difference.
You see, that newborn baby boy is about to be 20 this Saturday. I made a whole lot more mistakes in my parenting of him than all the others. For over time, I began to trust more and more that the Lord loves my children WAY more than I ever could…and He will take care of them, one way or the other. I do not have to make everything bubble-wrap safe. I can actually let them venture out. And so our oldest has! I love the brave young man he is becoming. I love the way he is forging his own way and finding Jesus to be his very own great reward.
The others are following suit–our next child is flying off this June to her first rental house with her friends and to begin college this fall. She is a bold warrior of a young woman. I cannot wait to see what God has in store for her! Our next two are taking bold steps, as well–sharing their faith, loving others and serving in our new church plant (launching on April 1st!)
As I continually let go and trust…becoming a brave mom, I’m finding that my kids are becoming brave, too. My Chris is giving them roots and wings, as well. In fact, Chris teaches them more about being fearless, strong and having a good sense of humor in the process than I ever could! Between us and with God’s help, our children are well-suited for every challenge they face.
It was with much joy that I received an invitation to share a new resource on becoming a brave mom from Lee Nienhuis. Her book Brave Moms, Brave Kids is being released this Thursday and I have the privilege of offering one to you all! Just to let you know, I received one for free for my review and participation.
And in my reading of her book, I found her wisdom and truth to resonate with my spirit. I wish I had read it when I was a younger mom…wish I had saved my kids some of the silly fears that I had to come back and break ties with in their lives, later on.
One quote that I loved from Lee is this: “The problem we face as mothers is we cannot hold on to both fear and faith simultaneously. I began to find the fear debilitating and suffocating. I realized the slide from anxiety into depression is well worn by mothers who cannot function because they are chained to events that haven’t even happened. Some withdraw from society and cluster into huddles of other believers, who curse the darkness and live reactionary, threatened lives. I began to see signs of that developing in me. Where was my boldness that moved out in faith?”
I have some exciting news today, my friends. I get to give away a free book to one of you!
To win, enter the Rafflecopter here! I will announce winners on Friday, February 2nd.
I wanted to close with Lee’s BRAVE MOM Identity Manifesto! It takes gumption and gusto to walk out in faith and believe that God has MORE than you ever dreamed in mind for not only you, as a brave mom, but for your precious child, giving them wings to fly boldly!