“Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above,
where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.
Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.”
When You Think You’re Not Doing Enough
There are so many times I feel like I’m botching things up.
Recently I have been struggling with fears of not discipling my kids enough. Am I failing them spiritually? So and so does nightly devotions with her husband and kids, and then they all pray together. So and so has prayer cards on their dining room table and they pray together every night. So and so writes beautiful letters to her kids that are so deep and thoughtful. So and so teaches her kids large portions of scripture to memorize . . . and they do.
And here I am, feeling like I can’t seem to do enough.
Sometimes I’m tired, sometimes I feel alone in the doing, sometimes I feel lost or confused or overwhelmed.
So I emailed a former mentor of mine, someone from my college days, and asked her how she discipled her children, who are now grown. This is what she wrote back:
I usually read the Bible before going to bed with the little girls, and when I homeschooled them, my husband did that while I got ready for school. They would see us having quiet times, too. For each girl it was different. We never pushed them but would go out sometimes with them and have a special quiet time with them.
Hold up. That’s it? She just read the Bible to them and sometimes took them out for special quiet times with them?
I was expecting all “the things.” But this wise, godly, inspiring woman who has discipled hundreds of women, who has led Bible studies and taught Scripture and co-led a ministry with her husband just “read the Bible” to them when they were young? What does this all mean?!
It means that sometimes we get super wrapped up on all that we’re doing right or wrong and forget to set our minds on the things above, and the things above are sometimes the simplest: Jesus, the Word, and reading His word.
Yes. That’s what I want to do. I want to stop setting my mind on my earthly fears and failures and set my mind on things above — on Jesus and His Word.
And that I can share with my children without all the pressure or voices to do more right now.
I can open the Word. I can show them the Word. I can tell them about Him, when I sit and when I rise and as we live and do life. I can bless them before bed with a simple prayer.
As for the other good things, like memorizing Scripture and praying more deeply and all else? It will come. The Holy Spirit will help. Life is an ebb and flow. I’ll share this ebb and flow of life with my kids, doing my best with who I am and where I’m at.
But let’s just take some pressure off, take a deep breath, and get back to the basics.
One day at a time, slow and steady.
Where do you feel pressured to do more or be more?
Joanna @ Modern Ruth Project says
Great post and reminder! As Mark Twain said, comparison is the death of joy. Keeping our eyes focused on what everyone else is doing means that we are not focused on God. When I feel like I am doing enough, I stop, take a deep breath, and remind myself that large journeys are built on small steps. Best wishes!
Bev @ Walking Well With God says
My children are grown and it’s so easy to look back and say “If only”…If only I had read scripture to them more…If only, if only. This is where I need to look at God and know that He is Sovereign. The very thought that I am concerned about having instilled the right Biblical values in my children says that Scripture and my children having a relationship with the Lord was and is important to me. I did my best and God will honor that. He is able to fill in the gaps where I came up short. I also look to the scriptures and see how God used the worst parenting mistakes for the good of those involved and for His ultimate glory.
Michele Morin says
What a great confirmation of the truth that God calls us to live before our children in holiness — to do the Deuteronomy 6 along-the-way kind of discipleship. Thanks for this encouragement.
Beth Williams says
God’s timing is perfect. Last night I was feeling a little down. Dinner didn’t come out like I had planned. Thoughts kept coming to me not enough, can’t do it all like XX, etc. I was upset most of the night. Now I realize that I wasn’t focusing on God and His goodness.
Rebecca Jones says
I’ve been dealing with difficult children, taken from a home with drug abuse and neglect. Personally, I don’t think I have made a lot of headway. But I am sowing into them and I hope it sticks. It is a good prayer to pray for a teachable spirit, and ask the Holy Spirit to disciple them, Himself.
Thank you for doing what you are doing, Rebecca! I’m glad you are part of the body!
Thank you!! I at times feel like I’m floundering through life spiritually, especially when it comes to raising my son and daughter. See I’m raising them alone. So I feel like I have to cover so many bases, but in the overwhelming sense of needing to cover it all, I forget some things.
Thank you for reminding me of the basics.
Praying for encouragement for you right now, Liosha! 🙂 Your kids are blessed to have you! Praying for them to know and lean on their Heavenly Father as their Caring and Ever-Present Dad thru their whole lives!