Back to School, Back to Worrying about the Kids
It’s Fall – a time when many little ones start school. It’s a bittersweet season when many moms find themselves at home alone, wondering exactly where the time went. If you’re like me, tears are often an occurrence. Anxious thoughts might be spinning round your brain such as, “Who will she eat lunch with?”… “Will her teachers understand her and be kind to her? Patient? Loving?… “What if someone makes fun of her and I’m not there to protect her?” I continually quote one of my favorite scriptures over my child and over myself as well:
In nothing be anxious, but in everything, by prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. – Philippians 4:6
Full Disclosure: While many of you are nodding your head about your five-year-old starting kindergarten, I don’t have the same excuse. One of mine is 19! She’s all grown up! And yet, my mama instinct isn’t quite as mature. I’m still just as worried. She’s still my baby. As much as I wish it weren’t true, the “You’ve Graduated, Mama” diploma has not arrived in my mailbox.
The Ascend Womens Conference in October (Pasadena, California)
On one hand, I should be relieved that my oldest daughter has blossomed into a young woman – a woman ready to take on life’s challenges. (And no, she does not chew her finger nails anymore when she’s nervous.) With the upcoming Ascend Conference in October – an event that promises to teach women how to live Forever Free in Christ – you’d think I’d be relieved to have my time freed up.
And yet, even as a seasoned actress and key note speaker, I’m not immune to stage fright. In this case, my stage fright comes from my mommy anxiety. Will my little girl be safe in her new role as college student? Will she get good reviews from her classmates? Even if she fails, will she maintain her grace and dignity – even when people are booing her?
If we’re getting real here, what I think doesn’t really matter.
What I Think Doesn’t Matter
What matters is what God thinks. Last I checked, God loves me. He loves my daughter, and God loves you! How can I be so sure? Because, to quote the tried and true song I used to sing to my little girl (who is now grown up… did I mention she’s all grown up?) “The Bible Tells Me So.” (I even taught her the Jesus Loves me song in Sign language)
I can worry all I want, but it’s not going to keep my daughter any safer. It’s certainly not going to bring me peace. And I can promise you it’s not going to bring any joy to my husband whose sole job in life is not to listen to a woman over a strong cup of coffee two weeks in a row.
God Has a Plan – For Me, For You
No, if I really believe God has a plan for my daughter, and for me, I must trust Him, not my fears. Like the theme of my conference, I must remind myself that as a Christian woman I get to live Forever Free: free of worry, free of strife, and free from chains of anxiety that keep me from living my best life.
How Can l Live Free of Strife? Two Ways
1. Pray: even when you are freaking out!
Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Be anxious for NOTHING, but in EVERYTHING through prayer and petition, with thanksgiving in your heart let your request be made know to God. And the PEACE of God which transcends all understanding will guard your heart and mind through Christ Jesus our Lord. - Philippians 4:4-7
It’s pretty impossible to pray and think scary thoughts at the same time. The devil will have you believe differently, but stop listening to him. How? By praying and believing, we are believers NOT beggars! Don’t let him hear your worries. Let him hear your praises to Jesus. I tell you, sisters, it really irritates him. It’s super fun.
2. Read the Bible: I’m forever challenging the girls in my bible study group I lead to memorize the word of God. I’m a BIG proponent of Reading the word, believing the word, speaking the word, and watch God work! As we speak the word aloud it’s a scientific fact that you (we) believe 90% MORE of what comes out of our own mouth than what we hear others say. Speak it! Speak Faith!
Five Bible Verses to Strengthen Your Faith
1. Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 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? – Matthew 6:25-27
2. When I am afraid, I will trust in you. In God, whose word I praise, in God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I will not be afraid. What can mortal man do to me? - Psalms 56:3 -4
3. Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.– Matthew 11:28-30
4. And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? – Luke 12:25
5. 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. – John 12:25
Just typing out those verses, I feel better! Now I’m not saying I’m a super woman, but I (we) do have a super natural God. And really, that’s all I need to remember.
Print Those Verses Out, Ladies!
Perhaps you, like me, can print out the five verses above as a reminder to live in faith, not fear? In looking at those, I can remember to put my cape down and let Jesus wear it instead. Really, it’s the only way to fly in the face of worry anyway.
I look forward to writing to you all again next week when I dive into the fun subject of pain. Yup, you heard me right – PAIN. We’ve all experienced it. But with God, we can transform. Until then, leave a comment and let me know how I can pray for you. Feel free to pray for me, too! I won’t say no.
More on Brenda
Believe.com is thrilled to have this woman of God on our team. In addition to starring as Ashley for eight years on “The Young and the Restless,” Epperson is first and foremost a starring player for Jesus. Between her music, acting and upcoming women’s conference, Ascend 2014: Forever Free, Epperson is passionate about unlocking women from bondage to live in the freedom of Christ. Sign up to receive the latest updates and newsletter at the conference link or find her at her Facebook page here