5. The Disappointment of Dashed Dreams
Whether it’s getting straight A’s, making the basketball team, asking out a crush, or getting into a college of choice, our children’s dreams and goals are as numbered as the stars. When these hopes get dashed, however, our kids can undergo much heartache and start viewing the pursuit of their other goals with a deflated spirit.
As parents, we know that God wants our children to persevere and trust in him no matter the circumstances. A willingness to persevere after disappointment spurs our kids to keep working toward their goals despite the obstacles behind them or on the horizon. Also, perseverance in the face of hardship is vital to growing in faith and allows God to reinvigorate our children by embracing them with the Holy Spirit.
When setbacks throw a monkey wrench into your child’s plans in spite of her best efforts, lessen your kid’s discouragement by telling her that God wants us to trust in him with all our heart and lean on him, not on our own understanding. If we do so consistently, God promises to make our paths straight (Proverbs 3:5-6). If the obstacles get even tougher, boost her perseverance by showing her in the Bible that the Lord calls “blessed” those who persevere under trial “because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him” (James 1:12).
Popular sayings abound to help our kids make the best out of a bad situation. Quotes such as “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade,” and “Bloom where you’re planted,” point our children in the right direction.
However, nothing speaks to our child’s wounded spirit with the same conviction and power as the Lord’s Word. Soothing our children’s hurt feelings with God’s Word allows God to grant our children everything we, as parents, could ever hope for them. Namely, “the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint” (Isaiah 40:31).
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Dolores Smyth writes about parenting and faith. A perfect day for her includes running, reading, and spending time with her husband and three kids. Find her on Twitter @LolaWordSmyth.
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