How to Love like Jesus when Your Kids are Going Crazy

  • Meg Bucher
How to Love like Jesus when Your Kids are Going Crazy

“Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 NIV)

I have no doubt the teen years will descend on our household before we’ve gotten a grip on how to raise our two tween girls. The sheer amount of emotions involved keeps me on my knees in prayer, daily combing through the Word. The older I get the more I sprint to God for answers and “how to’s.”

Each stage of growth in my children’s lives thus far has brought simultaneous waves of celebration and struggle. Nothing reminds me of God’s love more than a week of full-on crazy in my house, when everything and everyone seems to spiral beyond my control. How do we love like Jesus in moments like this?

The more we love and follow Jesus, the more we become like Him. In between the hurt and the praise, an important piece of land is at stake in our hearts. Christ doesn’t promise us an easy, painless world nor compliant kids—but He does promise that He will never leave us. Through it all, the Creator of the universe resides in us believers. There is nothing we can’t get through while He is with us. We can’t shake Him, even if we wanted to.

When our kids are going crazy, when life is going crazy, we can hold onto verses like 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18. If we can keep learning to love Jesus, then we can keep learning to love like Jesus.

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Rejoice always.

Rejoice always.

Rejoicing realigns our thoughts. When we focus on who God is, we remember who we are. He is good—all the time. Every day, His mercies are new. He is faithful and just. He defends and protects us. Our Father in heaven hears us, sees us, and answers our prayers according to His will. Rejoicing in our Savior, Jesus, reminds us we are saved.

He came to earth to die for us and our children. He leaves the 99 sheep to go after the one that is lost. The compassionate Spirit of God translates in prayer what we cannot manage to utter in the midst of craziness. He reminds us of God’s truth and enlightens and translates God’s truths to us. When our kids are crazy, keep repeating simple truths about who God is and how much He loves us. It resets our panicked state.

Photo Credit: Unsplash/Xavier Mouton Photographie

Pray continually.

Pray continually.

Keep the conversation going. Life is full of curveballs, and if we’re following Christ we can assume they are aimed right at the back of our heads and the center of our hearts. Disciplined prayer carries us through hard circumstances and crazy times. God has grafted us into His family. We can have tough conversations with God and come unglued at His feet.

No human on this earth knows the notes of our hearts like He who created them. He embraces us for who we are, right where we are at. So often, we don’t embrace the process of sanctification in ourselves, our children, or those around us.

Keep negative and self-deprecating thinking at bay by communicating with Christ. He went through it all, felt it all, and chose to do it for us. He is relatable, and able to calm our fried nerves.

Photo Credit: Getty Images/fizkes

Give thanks in all circumstances.

Give thanks in all circumstances.

Gratitude is a good antidote for anxiety and angst over situations and people we cannot change. Though we have authority over our children, we do not have direct access to their hearts or thoughts. Focusing on what we don’t have or can’t change creates bitterness and unrighteous anger.

Lifting all our anxieties up to God with prayer and petition in thankfulness (Philippians 4:4-7) creates room in our minds and hearts to see God move. We don’t have to be thankful our kids are creating craziness, but we can list what are thankful for. Choose to focus on the good. We are all broken, our children included. No one wants others to see them for the ways they fail or fall short.

God doesn’t choose to see us like that. He commands us to love Him above all else, and love our neighbor as ourselves. Be sure we aren’t expecting too much from our children, or ourselves. Gratitude will set that part of our hearts straight. 

Photo Credit: Getty Images/Dragon Images

This is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

This is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

When we obey God’s commands and pray for His will in our lives, we can let go in crazy moments and give Him room to move. His will for us is to live life to the full (John 10:10)! We can’t do that if we try to swim out of life’s craziness without Him. We’ll surely drown, or at the very least deplete our strength trying. Default to His strength, and practice letting go. When we obediently follow Him, listen to and do what the Word says, His peace will guard our hearts and minds (Philippians 4:4-7). 

When we try to control the craziness, in our kids or life in general, we spin our wheels. Hopping on the reactive roller coaster of emotion is a sure way to crash like a toddler coming off a sugar high. Hold onto what matters most—Him—and let go. Focus on getting the dead-fish eating toddler down for her nap, and then choose to see the funny antidotes in it.

Repeat God’s truths to the child being bullied: above all, love others; always forgive right away; find the good in others; God loves you; you matter; He has a purpose for you; hurt people hurt people. In hard moments, I need to repeat His truths to my children, and myself. When life goes crazy, love like Jesus and hold onto Him for dear life.  

Meg writes about everyday life within the love of Christ. She stepped out of her comfort zone, and her Marketing career, to obey God’s call to stay home and be “Mom” in 2011. From that step of obedience her blog, Sunny&80, was born, a way to retain the funny everyday moments of motherhood. Meg is also a freelance writer and author of “Friends with Everyone.”  She loves teaching God’s Word and leading her Monday morning Bible study, being a mom, distance running and photography. Meg resides in Northern Ohio with her husband, two daughters, and Golden-Doodle … all avid Cleveland Browns fans. 

Photo Credit: Getty Images/Sasiistock



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