What Shall we Say About…
By Tosha Williams
As a child, I was afraid of the dark. And by “afraid,” I mean terrified. Every night I went to bed terrified of whatever was hiding under my bed or in my closet. My dad built forts of pillows and covers around me, protecting me from whatever lurked so I could fall asleep.
God eventually made me deal with my fear of the dark, and I’m happy that my children are way less afraid of it than I was.
And yet, there’s always something to be afraid of.
When Coronavirus surfaced in China in December, it was far enough removed that many did not worry too much about it. Pastors in Wuhan, the coronavirus epicenter, implored Christ followers around the world to pray – and many of us did. However, truth be told, we didn’t feel the fear until the virus moved closer to home.
As coronavirus surfaced on our own shores, we all watched the news reports hoping to protect our kids from both the fear and the pandemic. But then sporting events, March Madness, high school dances, celebrations, school and churches cancelled. By now, children are well aware of what’s going on in our world. There’s no protecting them from the knowing about it. They know.
So, what shall we say to them about it?
We can teach them – by word or example – stockpiling, hoarding, isolation, worry, doubt and dread. We can teach them to watch endless news cycles, give them more social media access while they’re out of school, and let our homes break down into places of isolated chaos.
OR, we will use this opportunity as our springboard to speak the truth of God’s Word into their lives. We don’t have to give the next generation new things to be afraid of, but we can teach them how to think godly through it. We can start with where they’re at, talk about what they’re feeling and point them to what God says.
In my home, we’re starting with this Scripture:
“God has not given us a spirit of fear, but one of power, love and sound judgment.” 2 Timothy 1:7 CSB
I’ve sent this verse image to my kids and husband on their devices so that it’s front and center as a family. (Click HERE and scroll to the bottom to access these free verse images for your family.)
Then, from this verse, we’re discussing these three questions:
- What POWER has God given us over fear today?
- What SOUND JUDGMENT does He want us to use to make wise decisions about fear?
- How does God want us to LOVE others through their fear?
We’re recircling these questions almost every day, in one way or another. What is God saying to us through His Word? Why does it matter? What else does God’s Word say to us about this? And, how does God want us to respond in Worship?
The answers to these questions are the beginning of the path through fear, no matter whether it’s fear of coronavirus or the dark.
Reasons to fear will always be part of this world. But God wants us to think different about our fears, with power, love and sound judgement.
This is a marked moment in history for our children’s generation. The template we give them now – the template for how to handle fear – will go with them the rest of their lives.
So, what shall we say to the children?
Let’s disciple them to walk through fear wisely and courageously, with the power, love and sound judgment that ARE from God.
And whether they use these truths in the dark or in a pandemic world, they will be stronger, wiser and more powerful because we did.
© 2020 Tosha L Williams, Family Disciple Me
The current coronavirus pandemic is a strategic time to disciple our kids about FEAR! How God’s Word says we should handle fear in our lives, whatever that fear is for each of us.
Kids, today we pray. TODAY WE PRAY.
It’s pretty clear what God wants us to do during time of pestilence and disease. He wants us to fall on our faces and cry out to Him, in humility, repentance and faith. So let’s pray today!!!
I have never been pushed so far outside my comfort zone and for so long. Yet, I learned during my personal ‘Crucible of Starvation and Sleep Deprivation’ that the darkest and coldest valleys provide the greatest opportunity to reinvent ourselves, grow, and move closer to God.
As the body of Christ, this season is our chance to rise up and live for more than ourselves. In Jesus’ Name, we can love and help others just like God has loved and helped us.
How do we translate our relationship with the Lord to those He’s entrusted to us? How do we speak Him into their lives? It’s an outgrowth of Seeking Him.