Yes, all of this is necessary to think about, of course! But, as I’ve prayed this week for the Lord to show me how He’d have me to change what my heart dwells upon concerning my children, I realize my heart is usually worrying and overwhelmed. That’s not how the Lord would have my heart to be. When I’m overwhelmed and worrying, I’m not the Momma that my kiddos need me to be. Yes, there are many tasks at hand, but if we are not careful we dwell on all the problems that need to be fixed. The Lord doesn’t want me to dwell on all of these things and especially on things that are out of my control!
When was the last time that I just dwelled on the fact that God let me be a momma? Thank you Lord for my children! Look at that sweet face sitting across the breakfast table from you and don’t be overwhelmed by all the stuff you must teach them. Look at what they have learned and look at the great opportunity that God has given you. You are the one that gets to spend time with your children teaching them! Look at their sparkling eyes and be thankful for their health. Look at the strengths of their personalities.
There is someone in the Bible that also struggled with his heart being overwhelmed. It was David! There are some Psalms in particular that I have marked that are a place to go to when I feel overwhelmed. You should read them! I love to see the “real” side of great Christian heroes and I realize that they had similar struggles that I deal with today. In Psalm 61 verse 2, David tells of his heart being overwhelmed. He tells of his desire to abide (or dwell) with Christ. I love his words at the end of his Psalm! He gives the remedy to an overwhelmed heart. He says, “So will I sing praise unto thy name for ever, that I may daily perform my vows.” How true! When we don’t dwell on how good God has been to us, especially concerning our children, we can’t perform the daily tasks at hand. In Psalm 143: 4 David says, “Therefore is my spirit overwhelmed within” Wow! That feels like a description of my heart sometimes! Then, he asks God in verse 8, “Cause me to hear thy lovingkindness in the morning; for in thee do I trust.”
So how are some ways we can help our heart to dwell on God’s lovingkindess concerning our children? How can we help our hearts to not be overwhelmed in this important task of training up our children? I have a couple of ideas:
1. Give our children to the Lord. Oh how easy that is to write, but how hard it is for us to do! Do you ever think of Hannah and wonder how she could possibly give Samuel back to the Lord? But, that’s what God wants for us to do! Now, He doesn’t exactly want us to pack their bags and have them go live in the church with the preacher! But, God does want us to remember that our children are His. They are just on loan to us for a bit. Dwell on the fact that God loves them even more than we do, and their lives are in His hands.
2. Dwell on the good things about your children. Let your heart look for the good and wonderful things about each of your kiddos. Remember the verse you were going to put in a visible place for you to see and dwell on every day? What about making a list of 3 things about each of your children that you can praise the Lord for? Praise the Lord for their wonderful friendly personality, or for their diligence to read their Bible, or for them improving in a difficult subject at school. (This applies from babies to grown children as well.) Put this list in a visible place for you to see. Dwell on it and smile. Let your kiddos see it too! How encouraging it would be for them to see that their Momma sees their strong points! We are very quick to notice when things don’t get done like chores and homework. (Not that we should overlook or disregard these things.) But, we should dwell twice as much on the positive things than we do pointing out the negative things not getting done. 3. When your heart starts to get overwhelmed and dwells on the things your child is struggling with, grab your prayer journal and jot it down. Then, faithfully bring it to the Lord and watch Him work. So often we keep all of our worries inside. We’re forgetting to give it to the Lord. “Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.” (I Peter 5:7) God doesn’t want us dwelling on all of our worries and problems, that’s His job. Ask Him for answers from His Word on what your role is in this situation. Is this a discipline matter? Are there some creative nutritional ideas you can put into practice concerning your picky-eater? Do you need to lighten your schedule and give your sweet child some extra time and attention? Am I expecting too much from them? Ask the Lord! He will give you the answers!
So, dear Mother, I encourage you to work on this with me. Get your heart in order and dwell on the things that are of “good report” concerning your children. Praise the name of the Lord for giving you these precious little ones!