Seeing in a new season

This week, mum of four Lucy, shares how she has been preparing for the transition back to school in her family.

What a crazy few months this has been for our kids. Covid has completely turned their world upside down! All the things they would normally take for granted have suddenly been thrown into question.

Being a mum of four boys I can only speak from the reality of life in our home, it’s certainly been a challenging time. For my 16-year-old, having his GCSE’s cancelled and finishing year 11 so abruptly was a strange and difficult reality. For my 15-year-old, home learning with very little support was a challenge, although he managed very well.

For my 13-year-old, trying to motivate himself to do project after project at home and plough through endless emails from teachers was a complete nightmare (although it taught him to become more independent and technologically aware). For my 10-year-old, the fact he wasn’t in a school environment completely threw him. I’m sure many of us will identify with these realities.

Navigating the transition back to school

As a parent, I’ve been wondering how I can help prepare my kids for this next transition back to semi-normal life again, as school starts back and work-life resumes.

Some of our children will be feeling fearful and anxious about going back. Some because they’ve moved to a different school and haven’t had the chance to prepare. Others, due to new friends, new teachers, a new classroom, or the fact they’ve had such a long break away and they don’t know what to expect now.

My prayer for my four children, is that they would know God’s peace and comfort, protection and strength as they step out into the world again – a world of social distancing and face masks – a very different kind of normal!

This is certainly how I feel about it. This season has been one of protection in a safe, faith-filled home environment, and as my husband and I let them loose into the world, I feel like I’m more prone to worry than they are. They are more resilient than I give them credit for at times.

For me, I have to entrust them into God’s hands again as I let go of them, and see them find their feet, make friends again, and venture into a not always friendly and particularly kind world. God’s got them, I know this and I am so grateful for all that he’s doing in their lives.

My confidence in God reaching out to them at school comes in part from my experience as a child. At age 14 I remember praying that God would give me a new friend, because I hated school and my other “friends” were awful. The following September, completely out of the blue a new girl, Sara joined my class. We had loads in common and got on really well. She was a God-given blessing to me for the following two years in that school.

God had heard my prayer in such a real way. I knew it was him and I know he will do the same for my children in whatever they’re going through.

Time and time again my experience has been when things have seemed too much to bear, God has faithfully poured out his grace, or brought a solution to my problem in a totally unexpected but glorious way.

Won’t he do the same for our kids?

He’s a better father to our children than my husband or I could ever be. I know he sees their fears, doubts, concerns, pains, disappointments and questions, and I’ve realised that only God can meet them in their place of need.

One verse that comes to mind is this: ‘Just as a father has compassion on his children, So the LORD has compassion on those who fear Him.’ Psalm 103:13 ASV

God loves our children more than we can imagine, and longs to nurture their hearts and walk them though this uncertain season. This September, I’d encourage us all to entrust our children into His faithful and strong hands.

Let’s pray our kids receive his grace to embrace the changes this new season throws at them.

In terms of my role as mum, I know I need to be an encourager, one who listens and is a wise and gentle person they can confide in when they need it the most. This is my prayer. I fail many times, as I’m carrying my own “stuff” but my prayer is that I’d be there for them, and encourage their precious hearts in the midst of these uncertain times.

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