We’ve been here before. Year after year, grade after grade. The spectrum of feelings is wide and broad. On one end: the excitement! Back to school shopping, reuniting with friends we haven’t seen all summer… moving on to a new grade! On the other end: the angst! The dread we all feel as summer ends and we revert back to early mornings, rigorous schedules and the ever so dreaded – homework!
This year is dramatically different from the ones before. School made an abrupt finale early spring, and we have all been scratching our heads since. Too many questions… What now? School or no school? Hybrid, remote or fully in-person schooling? Our heads are spinning. So much has happened in such a short time frame. We are still reeling from all of this and we still do not know what lies ahead.
Things have been out of our control.
In the midst of all the chaos and uncertainty, we have been fighting to grab a hold of tangible things we can control. So we started focusing on preparation! We focused on immediate wants and needs. Two words: Toilet Paper! We were flocking to the stores to stock up on the necessities to get us through this storm. We would begin to focus on what our necessities were or would be. Everything else seemed beyond our grasp of control, as a result, were sitting ducks.
We’ve all heard of the flight attendant effect, right? We are on a flight and we encounter some intense turbulence. Bumpy, knock-your-drink-off-of your-tray, turbulence. The first thing you do is search for a flight attendant. What are they doing? If they are smiling and proceeding with the drink service – all is well. We find reassurance in their demeanor. If they were packing carts up, strapping themselves into their seats, drying accumulating beads of sweat with their sleeves and whispering worriedly to each other – we would PANIC.
This year, which one were you? When your children looked to you, what did they find? What did our children take away from this experience? What can we change? What did we learn? How can we make these bumpy rides in life smoother for them?
For starters, we must learn to never take our eyes off God and His Word. His Word has sustained my family and I through this and more. His Word is written in stone… It never fails, never changes or wavers. As the world changes and at times, become more uncertain. Let your only necessity, be Jesus. Find preparation in the Word. Let the Lord guide you and your family’s paths forward.
Matthew 6:25-33 tells us exactly that: “That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing? Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are? Can all your worries add a single moment to your life? Why worry about your clothing? Look at the lilies of the field and how they grow. They don’t work or make their clothing, yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are. And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith? So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.“
Only the Lord can meet our needs. Only the Lord can prepare us for the incoming storms. This year has taught us this. We did not know how to prepare ourselves because our local and national government themselves did not know what was coming, what was next. The narrative has changed a hundred times. “Do this… actually, do not do this, do that..” New rules, changed rules – lots of backtracking and amounting confusion.
The one thing that has not changed and will never change is: The Promise – God’s Word.
Let’s replace the flight attendant effect with the GOD EFFECT.
I encourage you today, whatever your day looks like remote, hybrid or in person. To make it a point for you, and especially your children, to set time aside to be with The Lord and in his Word. Read, take notes, journal, meditate on it. Pray for the Lord to bless your day and guide your steps. Let him work through you and your family. Teach your children that our only necessity in this life is Jesus. In Him and ONLY Him, we will find protection, peace, happiness, fulfillment, strength, healing, understanding, intelligence, patience – in Him, we find it all!!
Have a recital or sports game? Pray. Have an exam next period? Pray. Have a dentist appointment? Pray. Going on vacation? Pray. God gave us these things to do, not for them to be a burden but because they are weapons! If we learn to use these weapons and help equip our children with them, no attack will be able to prevail. So make it a part of your day! Train them up (and yourself!) in the way they should go. It takes effort, but the reward far outweighs the work!
I Love you!
We are here to help! We have made a 7 day devotional to get you started! Make it fun! Make it a warm up before homework, before school, before bed to spend time with the Lord. Incorporate prayer as preparation for it all.
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