It was after the youth meeting, the parents gathered downstairs for coffee, the conversation turned to their children’s latest accomplishments. Mathew’s son was finishing medical school. George’s daughter was already a cardiologist. Abraham spoke once more about how much money his daughter was making at that law firm downtown. One of them turned to Chacko, “What about your son? What is he doing anyway?” Chacko tried to laugh it off. The truth was that he was worried. His son had dropped out of college after the first year. Chacko was very concerned that his son just wasn’t turning out right.
A majority of parents today experience these concerns at least in part. In Indian families, we aren’t necessarily worried about drugs or sex affecting our children, however, as they grow older the worry is that they are not achieving their potential or living up to expectations. Many parents then feel guilty for even thinking such thoughts. These anxieties, largely unseen but a potent force nonetheless, causes tension, disagreements, difficult relations, and countless arguments over trivialities.
“Am I alone in feeling this way? Is there any hope for me? How can I get past these worries? Does God care about my children? Where can I go for help?”
The first step in finding answers to these questions is to admit that we have a problem. That sounds like simple advice but it is very important. We have to be honest with ourselves and with God.
Second, we need to turn to God for help. God has promised He will not give us any burden that is too heavy to bear. We are His children. He will never let us walk alone. He will always be near us, and He has promised to take away our fears when we look to Him and admit that we need His help. When our families seem to be falling apart, it is diffcult to realize God is there and that ultimately He is in control. But we will never overcome our problems by our own abilities. We have to rely on Him.
Finally, it is only through relying on God and standing on God’s promises that we will be able to overcome our problems. When the devil tries to convince you that your child will never turn away from his or her destructive lifestyle and return to God and to the rest of the family, you can resist by standing on the promises of God: Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household (Acts 16:31); I will contend with those who contend with you, and your children I will save (Isaiah 49:25). The Lord declares that there is hope for your future. Your children will return to their own land (Jeremiah 31:17). Many more Bible verses can help you stand when you try to find solutions to your family problems.
Anxiety and fear do not have to rule our lives. There is a better way - do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus (Philipians 4:6-7). There is hope, and there is help—trust in the Lord, delight in Him, commit your way to the Lord and He will do this.