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Special Fears: 6 Truths to Defeat Your Parenting Worries

Jerusha Agen Fighting Fear 27 Comments

Jerusha: I’m thrilled to have Lori Schumaker, Christian blogger extraordinaire, visit us today with this encouraging post! Please join me in giving her a big FW community welcome!

By Lori Schumaker

mother-with-girl-blonde (1280x909)I believe, as mothers, the greatest means through which God pulls us beyond ourselves and into a humbling understanding of our need for Him and the power of His love, is through our children.

But I also believe, as mothers, the greatest weapon the enemy has to thwart our purpose is through our children.

“Making the decision to have a child – it’s momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body.” – Elizabeth Stone

Our greatest strength and our greatest weakness. Submitted to God, our children are our strength. Holding on in tight control, they are our weakness.

I’m a mama to a little one with special needs. As the years have unfolded and we hoped and prayed for progress that would point to a life of independence – a life resembling “typical” – we instead have come face-to-face with many truths we didn’t want to hear.

Time and again, I would feel fear rising up within my spirit.

How will we care for her? In 2 years? 5 years? 20 years?

How will we meet her needs?

What if she rebels against us?

Where will we turn for help?

What if something happens to us? Who could and would step in?

I’d recognize it by the pounding heart, rollercoaster emotions, and anxiety. Sometimes it ushered in restless nights filled with nightmares. While other times I simply wanted to sit in the middle of my pantry with a bag of potato chips and no interruptions.

Masked in many ways, it couldn’t hide. It was fear. Fear of what the future would bring for my child and for us as a family.

mother-with-girl-dress (1280x853)Often, it triggered a determination to conquer. Push hard. Seek more answers. More resources. More of everything.

I refused to acknowledge my limitations. I labeled my exhaustion as failure.

The enemy whispered, “You’ll never be enough…”

I’d then land in a puddle of defeat. Wanting nothing more than to hide under the covers, I’d withdraw from the world.

Naturally when conflict arises and fear manifests, our human instinct is to either fight or flee. Based on our unique wiring or past life experiences, we lean toward one or the other.

But fear in any situation is not a battle we solve by simply fighting or fleeing. Fear is what the enemy wants wrapped around our souls, deceiving us into believing we are powerless.

Defeated.

Hopeless.

But as believers and followers of Christ, we don’t have to lay down and take the lies that debilitate us. We can take fear, boss it around, and rebuke its power!

You see, we have something more in Christ. We have His promises. And we have the God of the Universe – the One who calms the seas and the storms – the One who brings life from death. Yes, we have Him as our defender.

What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us. – Romans 8:31-34

Because of Him I can face the storms in my life without fear. And with Him I can walk in confidence knowing these six truths:

special-needs-parents-down-syndrome (1280x873)6 TRUTHS TO DEFEAT PARENTING FEARS

1. God knows the very hairs on my head, as well as my daughter’s. He knows her well. Inside and out. And He has a plan for her that even with big mistakes on my part, cannot be thwarted.

2. The God of the Universe defines beauty. Not me. Not the world. Even though I have dreams of my children living a certain lifestyle, my dream is not the only version of something beautiful.

3. I am human and designed with limitations. If I could do it all, I would have no need for a Savior. It’s not an inconvenience to Him, but rather the desire of His heart. He meets us where we are.

4. When I make choices about my child’s care based on prayer and in alignment with God’s Word, I can know that God will mark those steps and bring my child to the place He has for her. Therefore, I do not need to fear making the wrong decision.

5. Just the next step is all that matters. I don’t need to see the whole picture and I do not need to take down the mountain in one fell swoop. One step at a time. Simply doing the next right thing. God knows that whole picture and has marked each step. He is in control so there is no need for worry or fear.

6. It is okay to ask for help. God designed us for community and blessed each with different gifting. Without our needs, others have no opportunity to use that gifting. We deepen our relationship with Christ through service. We grow in humility and we step into the power of sacrifice.

Friends, I want you to know that fear doesn’t have to wrap around your soul and debilitate you. I know there will be moments, days even, when it catches you off guard. I’m a work in progress right alongside you. But I can promise you a day will come when fear merely plays a walk-on role. A brief moment that few even notice. A minor impact on the story of your life. Just keep remembering truth and trading it for each lie. One step in front of the other.

That’s all you need.

Our great Defender has the rest.

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What worries or scares you as a parent? Lori’s tips are helpful for those of us without kids, too–which of the 6 Truths did you need to hear today? Please share!


Lori-Schumaker (914x1280)Lori Schumaker is an encourager at heart. She has spent her life learning of the hope and victory available when we embrace our identity in Christ. Today, when she isn’t busy being a wife and Mom to her three children, she teaches, ministers, coaches, speaks, and writes to share that hope with others.

Wherever you find yourself today – walking through the difficult, needing to get unstuck to follow your purpose, or simply experiencing a season of beautiful chaos, Lori’s blog found at www.lorischumaker.com is a place where you can get a virtual hug from someone who truly understands.

You can also connect with her on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest.

Comments 27

  1. Helene

    I love this! It is just as applicable to my daughter who is leaving for college in a year as my Uncle’s daughter who will not be living a “typical” or independent life.

    1. Lori Schumaker

      Hi Helene,

      Parenting comes down to following the Lord and knowing His truths. They are our guide no matter our situation or season with our children. When we seek Him and claim His promises and Truths, fear is diminished. I’m so glad you found encouragement for your own journey here today!
      Blessings and smiles,
      Lori

  2. Susan | The Sparrow's Home

    Wonderful! Just wonderful! Each one of these pointed truths speaks volumes. And each one really does combat a particular area of fear, not even just in parenting. Pinning this, not just to save for reference, but to use in a women’s study group. Oh what we could conquer if we went to this list when fear strikes, identified which truth we are in need of and reminding ourselves of it! Thank you for this valuable resource.

    1. Lori Schumaker

      Hi Susan,

      I am so thrilled these truths resonated with you! When we fully claim His truths and promises, nothing is impossible. Fear is struck down and victory is claimed. I’m honored you will be using this list in your study!
      Blessings and smiles,
      Lori

  3. Marjorie

    The first truth resonated with me – God has a plan for my son. He is leaving college after just two years which is not our choice for him but God has a plan. I pray that He will seek the Lord’s will now and for the rest of his life. Thank you for the encouraging reminders!

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      Jerusha Agen

      Oh, yes, Marjorie–it is so hard when our loved ones, especially children, go a way we don’t believe is best for them. The reminder Lori provided here is one I’ve found so helpful with that kind of situation, too. God created your son and knows His plan for him, your son’s purpose, the path he will walk–and that plan is perfectly good! I pray you can experience peace with the knowledge that our good God holds your son in His hands!

  4. Michele Morin

    It’s so true that our fears for our children are the things that wake us up in the middle of the night — but they are also the very thing that God uses to push us outside our comfort zone and into His offer of comfort and peace. Thanks for sharing your own specific situation as an example, and Jerusha, thanks for sharing Lori’s words here in your welcoming space!

  5. Meghan

    Lori, God sent this right to my inbox today in his wonderfully perfect timing. We are going through some things with one of my children but I am so glad to be reaching beyond fear and getting help now. Fear had me in its grip for a long time, and I also tried to do everything alone. #4 #5 #6 are my favorite and speak to me especially. It helped to read that God is going to go before us, and we don’t have to worry about these decisions we are facing and making because we are taking them to Him in prayer and taking it one step at a time. Thanks for writing this. This week has been the hardest for me and as I lay in bed last night I had to rehand it all over to Him. (hugs + prayers for you all too sweet friend!)

  6. Beth

    Parenting is eye-opening in many ways, but parenting a special-needs child takes it to a whole new level, Lori! I’m so glad you shared your wisdom that has been born out of these very real struggles parent’s face. I love how you always point us back to the Lord as our strength as well. Thanks to Jerusha (cool name!) for highlighting your story here today as well!

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  7. Theresa Boedeker

    Lori, Great tips for parents. For what parent doesn’t have fear or worry? Love the point about beauty can be so different than our own expectations. Also just taking the next small step. We don’t know the end or always where we are going headed, but taking the next small step shows our faith and trust.

  8. Maree Dee

    Lori, Thank you for sharing so openly. I know for me #5 just the next step was the hardest for me to learn. I am a planner, so it went my personality. I called it being in the moment or only suffering this moment instead of all future ones (which we don’t know will happen) and all the past that carried with it pain. It was the one stope I needed the most in learning how to embrace, navigate, and persevere on in the world of mental illness with my children. Okay as I look back up at your steps I realize I still struggle with many. I am so glad I am not alone. #6 Asking for help is a hard one and #4 not fearing I made the wrong decision, but I am getting better at it. I just have to keep letting go and giving her to God. Thank you for your post.

    1. Lori Schumaker

      None of them come easy, do they? I know I am having to do it day by intentional day. The fears sneak in so quickly and I find myself backsliding. Being a special needs Mama isn’t easy – especially when the special needs are in areas of mental health. There are so many unknowns – so much the doctors still do not know. It’s a daily walk of trust with Jesus, for sure! Praying for you, my friend!

  9. Cindy

    Lori, Thank-You for this!
    I just finished handwriting all 6 of your parenting truths to help me remember that fear doesn’t have to be so frightening! The answer really is in Jesus Christ, prayer and His word. How we all need this reminder. Thank-You!
    I have a special needs son and I also work with special needs adults for a living. It’s been challenging and joyful, all at the same time. Lately though, I’ve just felt like giving up and I’ve been scrambling to find God’s will for my life and my son’s life. These 6 parenting truths will help me get back on track, Praise God! The fear and feelings of giving up were the enemy’s attacks…………..with God as our refuge we no longer need to be frightened of the enemies fear attacks. This writing helps me refocus so I can keep my eyes on God who strengthens me. This will also help me help my son, (in alignment with God’s will, prayer and His word), which will make the harder day more peaceful .
    Thank-You again for your writings on fear and parenting. ( I can totally relate to the potato-chips in the pantry :))

    1. Lori Schumaker

      Oh, Cindy, I am so touched that God delivered these words in just the right timing. I pray they pull you closer to Him so that you can feel His comfort, peace, strength, wisdom, guidance, and HOPE with a renewed spirit! I’m stopping right now to pray for you!

  10. Robin

    A much-needed post Lori. Thank you for sharing these beautiful truths. These truths can apply to any parent. I’ll keep remembering the truths, God’s promises, and I gladly trade these truths for the lies any day! God has a plan for each of us. Amen!

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