Guiding Our Children Through Difficult Times

If someone had told me a month ago I’d be living in a world of social distancing, self-quarantine, toilet paper hoarding, and cancelation of the NCAA men’s basketball tournament (among other things), I would have asked what silly futuristic movie they’d recently seen. Talk about absurd.

But here we are. 

If we feel off balance at the tsunami of change in our lives, how do our children process their “ordinary” being upended? 

We all have them—times that our feet get knocked out from under us. But although it’s unusual to be confined at home due to a national health crisis, various hardships are inevitable, and we can feel blind-sided by disappointment, pain, or sorrow.

When a family experiences difficulty, parents can forget that young ones are walking a similar path. Children may not be aware of every detail of a situation, but they are sensitive to tension and mood changes in a home.

As adults, when we hold to God’s promises—when we cling with a desperate faith, throwing ourselves at the foot of the cross—we show our offspring how to stand strong in life’s storms.

And as we seek God’s Word and pray together, each family member will benefit from the peace that infuses our homes.


In times of stress, the following verses can be a great source of comfort for the family who gathers to share burdens and to pray to the One Who is willing and able to carry those burdens:

You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you,
all whose thoughts are fixed on you.
·   Isaiah 26:3 (NLT)   ·

Father, we may not understand everything that is happening around us. But Lord, in faith, we’re going to fix our thoughts on You. Help us to focus on Your heart and character and to remember the vastness and depth of Your love. Even in this storm, we claim Your promise of perfect peace.


Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray.
Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers,
letting God know your concerns. Before you know it,
a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good,
will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens
when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life
·   Philippians 4:6–7 (MSG)   ·

Father God, we have doubts and worries. The enemy whispers that You have forgotten us. Help us, Father. Guide us as we shape our worries into prayers. Let our hearts overflow with petitions and praises, crowding out the voice of the evil one. With all our hearts, Lord, we long for You to displace worry at the center of our lives. Thank you for your promise of peace and wholeness.


When anxiety was great within me,
your consolation brought me joy
·   Psalm 94:19 (NIV)   ·

Lord of all creation, in spite of this present storm, we know that You are our Everlasting Father, Rock of Ages, Prince of Peace, Savior, Master, Eternal One. You give joy, hope, and stability in the midst of chaos. You do not change. You are solid ground. Thank you, Jesus. We love You.


Teaching our children to reach for Jesus in all circumstances will enable them to walk with confidence, even as they leave the shelter of home. And as we teach, God works in our lives, drawing us to Himself.

What are your family’s go-to verses in difficult times?

 

 

quiversquaregray

7 thoughts on “Guiding Our Children Through Difficult Times

  1. Wonderful reminders Ms. Leigh Ann. Even though some may not ask questions, our “littles” are great observers and many cannot yet understand what is happening. We need to take a few moments and acknowledge them, explain what’s happening (and why), and be sure to include them in our prayers. Ask them to offer a prayer for their family and the world they know. What better way to teach than to include. Thank you for sharing this ma’am. God’s blessings.

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  2. I love how you coupled Scripture with a personal prayer. Taking a seat and sharing with our kids is an excellent way to demonstrate our own faith in God. I am amazed at how just a few minutes away from the chaos and focused on God completely settles my soul. Proverbs 3.5-6 is a truth I cling to.

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    1. Charla, that area of scripture is one of my favorites and so relevant to what we’re all experiencing. Oh, how we want our children to know that trusting in Him will settle our soul in the midst of crazy circumstances!

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  3. Children sense tension in adults; therefore, it’s wise to explain current situations to them at a level they can understand. However, you also suggest teaching children what’s most important, Leigh Ann—turning to God in prayer and in His Word. A favorite verse is Psalm 46:1. “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.”

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  4. Leigh Ann, I love your thoughts, along with the photo of the trees.
    Here is a biblical prayer that parents can pray for their children: “That they will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of living water, which yields its fruit in its season and its leaf does not wither. And in whatever they do they prosper, having been firmly rooted and now being built up in Him and established by faith, overflowing with gratitude. (Psalm 1:3; Colossians 2:7).

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