March 22, 2011
When I’m Not There, God Is
“For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways.”
Psalm 91:11 (NIV)
I watched the weather report with heightened concern. A winter snowstorm in the White Mountains was normally great news. It meant the ski lifts would soon be open and that our dry state would benefit from moisture. Today, however, it had a more ominous meaning, for my son Dylan was in the path of the storm.
Dylan and his high school wrestling team had been at a tournament in the mountains for a few days. They were due to be leaving soon, and my concern turned to dread as I pictured those desert dwellers trying to navigate through a snowstorm. My panicked mind reviewed all the horror stories of school sports teams, in vans or buses, going off the road. As I imagined the curving road with blinding snow, my heart started to pound.
The ringing of the phone jarred me from my unhealthy thoughts, and I heard my son’s voice on the other end. “Mom,” he said. “We’re leaving right now to try and beat the storm.” I breathed a prayer of thanks for those coaches who cared more about the kids’ safety than finishing the tournament, but my worry continued.
Never before had I experienced such a longing to have my son safe in my arms. But that wasn’t possible. Dylan had to make that journey home in the care of others. Thankfully, in the midst of my worry, God reminded me that Dylan wasn’t just in the care of those coaches, but He was watching over Dylan.
I’ve struggled with this issue of worry over my children’s safety since they were born. Because of my tendency to worry, I have the potential to be over-protective. However, years ago, God revealed to me that my fears were born more out of my lack of trust than a healthy concern. The truth was I believed my children were only safe when they were in my care. The reality of this fallen world is my children are only safe in the care of God.
Many of us will deal with anxiety over our children’s safety, as well as countless other things. Instead of being overcome with worry, I’ve learned to identify the worries that come when I’ve misplaced my trust. It prompts me to pray more, trust more, and enjoy more of life with my children. By the way, my son and his wrestling team made it home safely that day and my prayer life has been stronger ever since.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for caring for my children even more than I do. Thank You for hearing my prayers, and for protecting my children. Help me to learn to trust You more, and to pray more about even the smallest details of their lives. I want to be a woman and mom who trusts You, the true source of all help. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Visit Glynnis’ blog for more encouragement in trusting God.
When Your Child Is Hurting by Glynnis Whitwer
The Character of God: Understanding His Heart for Usby Brian T. Anderson and Glynnis Whitwer
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Make a list of the times when you are most concerned for your child’s safety. Commit to praying every day for a week regarding these specific needs. Hopefully this will jump start a pattern of consistent prayer. If you aren’t currently parenting a child at home, identify a child you know and pray for him or her.
Why is it important for a parent (or any adult) to pray for children?
According to Psalm 91, from what does God protect His people?
Isaiah 43:2, “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.” (NIV)
Psalm 4:8, “I will lie down and sleep in peace, for you alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety.” (NIV)
Matthew 18:10, “See that you do not look down on one of these little ones. For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in heaven.” (NIV)
© 2011 by Glynnis Whitwer. All rights reserved.
Proverbs 31 Ministries
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Matthews, NC 28105
Originally published Tuesday, 22 March 2011.