3 Things a Mom Never Needs to Worry About
by Cindi McMenamin
I’ll admit it. I’m tempted to worry when it comes to my only daughter, Dana.
Even though she’s almost 24 years old!
Yet Dana hates when I worry. Not only because she’s “a big girl now” and has to keep reminding me that she’s perfectly capable of doing things on her own. But also because she doesn’t want to have to worry about me worrying.
I’m pretty sure God…
…doesn’t want me worrying about my daughter either.
God’s Word tells us “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.” As we do that, the next verse tells us what happens: “Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7, NLT).
I’ve recently come to see how many of my fears and worries, throughout my daughter’s childhood and now into her adulthood, were unfounded because I know and love a trustworthy God. Because God hears our prayers and answers them according to His infinite knowledge about what’s best for our children, we don’t’ need to waste our time worrying. Praying? Of course. But worrying? Never.
As I point out in my recently-released book, 10 Secrets to Becoming a Worry-Free Mom, we don’t worry because of our circumstances or because of the way our children are. We worry because of who we are. And worrying doesn’t show how much we love our children, but how little we know and trust God.
We can break the worry habit as we get to know the One who can control all that we can’t. For example, here are three things you never need to worry about because of Who God is:
- Your Child’s Friendships – I used to worry about my daughter making friends when she started school. As an only child, Dana wasn’t “outgoing” when it came to initiating friendships. Yet the same God who helped me extend and respond to others and form lifelong friendships while I was in elementary school did the same for her, in spite of what I saw as timidity on her part. While I have constantly prayed that my daughter would find and choose friends who would be a positive influence on her spiritually, she had some close friends I wouldn’t have chosen for her. But, Dana ended up having a positive impact on them and leading them to a better understanding of Who God is. He wanted His best — for her and her friend — rather than what I considered “best.”
- Your Child’s Choices – God was the perfect parent, but Adam and Eve still sinned. So even when you are doing all you can to guide your children spiritually, they will still make choices of their own. At times those choices won’t be the best ones. But that’s how they learn and grow through their mistakes. And that’s when we trust that “in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28). Instead of worrying about your children’s poor or less than best choices, pray for their strength and wisdom to discern God’s will over their own (or someone else’s) and find ways to encourage them, rather than pressure them through verbalizing your worries or concerns.
- Your Child’s Health – As you and I do the best we can to ensure our children eat nutritionally and get adequate sleep and exercise, we are powerless, in some ways, over their health. And yet, I am comforted knowing that nothing touches our children that hasn’t first passed through God’s loving hands. What an assurance! No matter what my child contracts, no matter what he or she touches or eats (and we’ve all been horrified by what they’ve put in their mouths!), God has their little (and adult) lives in His hands.
Sometimes we assume our desires for our children are the same as God’s desires. But God is looking beyond our children’s physical safety and what makes their parents feel comfortable and is weighing the entire man or woman He wants your child to become. God takes into account the lessons they will learn along the way, the challenges they will experience that will shape their character, and their fears and uncertainties that will drive them to depend on Him.
Instead of worrying, trust the process God is allowing in your child’s life, pray for them to hear God’s leading, offer guidance when asked, and then wait to see what God does. Raising children can be as exciting or as worrisome as you make it.
Cindi McMenamin is a national women’s conference speaker and author of several books, including When Women Walk Alone, (more than 125,000 copies sold), When a Woman Inspires Her Husband, When a Mom Inspires Her Daughter, and her most recent, 10 Secrets to Becoming a Worry-Free Mom. For more on Cindi’s books and speaking ministry, or to download her free article “Suggestions for Mother-Daughter Memory-Making” see her website: www.StrengthForTheSoul.com.