We are a few weeks into the New Year. Depending on how you look at it, so has a new decade. As many do this time of year, we usually take stock in a number of things. How am I doing in meeting my various responsibilities? How am I doing on my relationships? If you are a parent, you certainly are looking at how your kids are doing. How are they faring in school? In their friendships? Add on to that the turbulence of 2020 and you have quite a bit to think about. How do you prepare yourself for what awaits you and your family? Let us offer some thoughts.
What You Can Do
First, recognize that the only thing anyone can do is to control themselves, how they think, what actions they take, and how they respond to what comes their way. There is great peace in this. It settles one’s mind. It puts us in a place where we can and should only use the finite energy that we have on what matters.
Second, take time to determine what truly matters in your life. As a parent, one posit we will make here is that your children need that aforementioned energy. (We were going to say that your children truly matter. BUT…we know you already realize that.) They need to see you put a priority on investing time and attention into their worlds. Have you not already had to do that, given the work and home environments that this pandemic has foisted on most?
Third, recognize that you can look at the uncertainty of 2021 from a mindset of apprehension or anticipation. Apprehension is the presence of anxiety or fear with the expectation that something bad will happen. Anticipation is looking forward with a pleasurable expectation. For purposes of this discussion, let’s assume that you want the latter. How do you fight off the apprehension, which will undoubtedly try to worm its way into your mind from time to time?
The Two A-words
Let’s turn to scripture. Our Creator knows what apprehension is. He is there before we are. In scripture, he says, “Do not fear . . . . When you pass through the waters, I will be with you”. (Isaiah 43:1–2) As a parent, is that not something that you would say to comfort your child when he or she becomes fearful? Of course it is. Well, let us encourage you to seize on these words as spoken by God in scripture. This is how you fight off apprehension. And, do not forget…this will be a regular battle with ebbs and flows to it. So take what you learned from 2020, apply it to 2021, and let anticipation reign as you view the uncertainty of 2021. Know that, with a personal relationship with the Son of your Creator, He will take you and your children through whatever comes.