Challenges come in all shapes and sizes. And the days when uncertainty follows a challenge can be unnerving. Perhaps a daughter is facing an uncertain diagnosis or a son is facing an uncertain future.
Through these uncertain challenges, so many thoughts enter in which can disturb our inner peace.
You can see the headlights from the train bearing down on you, but are too paralyzed to move.
Can you relate? What do you do?
My oldest son is at Riverbend Correctional Facility in Milledgeville. He was recently moved to this facility in December after some intense prayer for his future. Four years ago when he was facing the decision of the courts, I thought my heart would explode when they gave the expected sentence. How would he survive 8 years in prison? Who would he become? Would his beautiful heart harden? What would happen to our family? What would his future look like when he was released?
I can think of several times throughout parenting when I struggled with the onslaught of what I call the “thought avalanche.” You know, when you go over and over in your head the expected outcome of any circumstance. I cannot think of any instance in parenting where this habit cultivated peace.
Over the last four years, God used a friend to help cultivate a new habit in my heart- PRAYER.
Instead of obsessing over the “what-ifs” in the challenge, she encouraged me to -
Believe and pray for the “what-is.”
She taught me that when I face the thought avalanche that I was to pray through it-with TRUTH:
How would he survive 8 years in prison? – His Father has promised to protect him from trouble. Psalm 32
Who would he become? - His Father has ordained every day of His life, His thoughts outnumbering every grain of sand. The One who created his inmost being has called him fearfully and wonderfully made in His Image. Psalm 139
Would his beautiful heart harden? - His Father promised to be his hiding place calling him to guard his heart. Psalm 32; Proverbs 4
What would happen to our family? – Our Father promised that He would never leave or forsake us and would hold us in His righteous right hand. Psalm 73
What would his future look like when he was released? - He has a loving Father who has a purpose and a plan for His life, to give him hope and a future. Jeremiah 29
As we face yet another challenge in his journey, I miss the wise words and prayers from my dear mentor and friend; however, she has left behind a great legacy in the discipline she has taught me.
Persevere and never give up praying
Invite others to interceed for you and your child
Pray truth into your challenge
Is there a circumstance in your own life where you need to pray truth?
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. -
The Lord holds our children and prayers in His Hand.
Father, thank You that You hear our prayers and promise to heal our land. I pray Lord that we will trust You, that we will send up our requests to You and the peace that transcends all understanding will be ours in Christ Jesus. Protect us from the distractions of the thought avalanche which threaten our peace. Help us to always remember the promises You have given us in Your Word. Guard the hearts and minds of our children and draw them to You.
You are a good, good Father,