faith-cross

The coronavirus leaves us all considering the unknown and “what if’s” and that kind of thinking can spin a “mom-mind” into places you don’t want it to go.  Little eyes are watching, little hearts are feeling and little ones (and big ones) are taking their cues from you mom.

I have a few decades on most of you and what my Father in Heaven has taught me when worry or anxiety want to take hold is to take my eyes (and my mind) off of myself, my circumstances and my surroundings and practice three things, VERY intentionally.

  1. gratitude – choosing to focus on God’s provision infuses the soul (and mind) with hope
  2. others blessing –  focusing on others and blessing those others brings purpose and is love in action (during this pandemic especially those who are helping/serving)
  3. pray – pray gratitude to the Father for all His many blessings, pray blessings over the “others” God brings to mind, is faith practiced through supplication

To practice #1 – gratitude, start a family gratitude journal and leave it smack dab on the dining room table.  Encourage all of your family members to grab that journal at any point during the day and write down what they are grateful for – little ones can draw what they are grateful for or enlist help from another family member to jot down their thoughts.

Then each evening have a time of prayer where you speak out loud and thank God for all that gratitude your family has been led (or dare I say “forced”) to recognize. The gratitude can be for small things, large things, things from the past, current things – whatever comes to mind. Truly there is so much to be grateful for…if we are intentional in looking.

To practice #2 – others blessing, by doing what you can to bring joy and lighten the load for others in practical ways, commit as a family to pray for those selflessly working to serve others! Have a family brainstorming session on who you will lift up in prayer!

In this family brainstorm session cut out slips of paper (or cut your cereal boxes into tiny circles, or hearts, use popsicle sticks, transform a deck of cards, get creative) and name every profession you can think of that is at work serving others and jot each down. If you have names for some of those serving put those names on individual slips of paper (cut outs) too!  Some prayers will be for groups of people, some are for individuals!

Each morning have each family member draw one out and commit to pray over the people/person AND write a note to that person and mail it, text it, or post it to social media.  You could even come up with a family cue and if anyone says a certain word throughout the day, everyone stops and lifts up a little prayer for their “people/person” – or think of another “fun” cue personal to your family (if the dog barks, if the baby cries, if someone hiccups … you get the idea!)

Others blessing can pull your mind, and your children’s mind out of worry and anxiety – God can use this time in your home to help you teach your children that whenever they are overwhelmed over anything they should turn to Father G-O-D and practice G-O-P (gratitude, others, pray).

Now, here is a challenge you may think you cannot manage … but you can, especially together as a family. I encourage you to work together as a family to memorize Ephesians 3:14-21.  As you are working to memorize this “others blessing” scripture I suggest you pray this scripture out loud as a family over each of the professions/people you pray over, entering their name where the word “you” appears in the scripture.

For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name.  I pray that out of His glorious riches He may strengthen you [insert group/name] with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you [insert group/name], being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you [insert group/name] may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

Ephesians 3:14-21

I would encourage your family to pray this prayer over all your loved ones too!

Lead the way moms (and dads) and reveal the strength and peace found when we rest in the knowledge that God is in control and He is to be trusted.