Several days ago, a longtime American friend told me that her adult son had recently joined the military reserves. She shook her head and said, “I’m afraid of what might happen to him. Hopefully our world will become a more peaceful place because I really don’t want him to end up overseas.”
I appreciated this woman’s honesty and reassured her that she’s not alone in her concern for her son. Everywhere I travel, I meet women with similar fears. Some are mothers whose teenagers are involved in drugs and sex, seemingly bent on self-destruction. Some are moms with adult children who are in prison, or headed for divorce, or struggling with unemployment issues. Others, with younger kids, are fearful of the media’s negative influence on their offspring, or of secular worldviews learned at school, or of the bullying issue.
So what’s a mom to do when struggling with fear for her kids’ well-being? I suggest following the advice Nehemiah gave when he and his people encountered obstacles while trying to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem: “…As I looked over the situation, I called together the leaders and the people and said to them, ‘Don’t be afraid of the enemy! Remember the Lord, who is great and glorious, and fight for your friends, your families, and your homes!’” (Nehemiah 4:14).
Whatever situation we’re facing with our kids or even our extended families, we can choose not to let fear overcome us. We can refuse to entertain the frightening what-if thoughts and focus our minds on promises from God’s Word and on truths about His character instead. Then we need to take our positions and do battle on our loved ones’ behalf. This means we stand in the gap for them through prayer, and we take other practical action when necessary and appropriate.
Don’t be afraid…remember the Lord…and fight for those you love. Great advice, Nehemiah!
Think of a time when you applied this counsel and share it with us!