“For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control,” 2 Timothy 1:7
So often lately I have found myself desperate for some sense of control. For families, who spend so much of their days trying to control nap times, meals, routines, and keeping everyone in check, feeling a loss of control can be overwhelming. During a time when there is so much, we cannot control, I reflect on the words above, “For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.” Sometimes I forget that even during times of the unknown, there are things that I can control: my thoughts, my feelings, my actions. The things in which we choose to invest our time and energy are in our control, and honestly, aren’t these the most important anyways?
It is important not to lose sight of the big things for which God has strengthened us, and the power within that He has given us. As parents, you can choose what tone to set for your family. Will your household be one focused on the uncontrollable small things, or will you choose to make each day one filled with intention? Let us show our children that we can take control of our day by focusing on the sunshine, the feel of a warm hug, the blessing of another day together; that these are blessings and make us whole.
Proverbs 16:9 tells us, “in their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps.” When we begin to focus on a need for control, it is important to look inward and upward. God is guiding us, and he has given us all we need. May we use that strength to control less and love more. I hope that as we navigate our new normal and find new ways of connecting and being together, we find opportunities for the big things that matter. Let us allow our actions, our words, and our feelings to be the foundation on which we grow.
Dr. Leanne Badham
Director of Precious Cargo Academy
For those who are feeling lost, heavy, and a loss of control:
Dear Lord, please help us to focus on the big things, to surround ourselves in love and see the blessings that are around us. May we let go of the small things and remember You have given us all the strength and power we need. Amen.
Take a break for some meditation, as a family. Breathing and breath control are incredibly powerful tools for helping children manage their emotions and actions. Try practicing some breathing techniques together. There are lots of different ways to help teach children. Use tools with your children when things start to feel a little overwhelming. Be a STAR – Stop, Take a breath, And, Release/Relax. You can look up other breathing techniques such a the Pretzel, The Drain, and The Hot Air Balloon, along with other family resources at consciousdiscipline.com.
Make a Cloud In a Jar
For this experiment you will need a jar with a lid, about 1/3 cup of hot water, ice, and hairspray. Start by pouring the hot water into the jar. Swirl it around a bit to warm up the sides of the jar. Turn the lid upside down and place it on the top of the jar. Place several ice cubes onto the lid and allow it to rest on the top of the jar for about 20 seconds. Remove the lid, quickly spray a bit of hairspray into the jar, and then replace the lid with the ice still on top. Watch the cloud form! Once you see a good amount of condensation form, remove the lid and watch the “cloud” escape into the air.