My son has been asking some big questions lately. Questions about faith and truth and current events, questions that are good and right but oh-so-large. I often feel like my answers are too small, like what I’m offering him feels like a snack when he’s hungry enough for a feast.
I’m so proud of him for wondering, because asking questions is a form of faith in action. Curiosity drives discovery, and God has promised us that if we seek him, we will find him. I just worry that I might not be sufficient help in this quest. That my knowledge and understanding are insufficient.
I feel the weight of my assignment as his mother, the welcome burden of discipling him well. I know that I am privileged and appointed to train him up in the way he should go, to make disciples of these little ones of mine. But I also know that society isn’t doing me any favors in this regard. That we are swimming upstream, instilling countercultural ideas into their hearts and minds.
I know in my bones that it’s more important than ever for faith to be discovered, wrestled with and claimed instead of simply handed down, but sometimes I simply don’t feel up to the task.
I worried over this in bed the other night, praying for wisdom and help from heaven.
“God,” I said, “If I don’t get this right, he might never know you fully. What if I fail him? What if I don’t convey your truth and love well enough? Help me!”
And God whispered this truth to my anxious heart.
But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you. John 14:26, ESV
The Helper, the Holy Spirit.
I breathed deeply of this reminder, of the truth that it’s not all up to me. That I have a Helper from heaven walking alongside me, empowering me to mother and disciple my children.
You have a Helper from heaven walking alongside you too, empowering you to mother and disciple your children.
We indeed have a big and important task of instilling the truth of the Gospel into our children, but, just like every other aspect of faith, it is not ours to carry alone.
The Helper is there, teaching us and reminding us of the truth and the love of God every step of the way.
It’s not solely up to us. We don’t have to raise these kids alone. This work of mothering and discipling is too big and too important for God to abandon us in the thick of it. He knows the task that he has set before us, and he has placed that urgency in our hearts to do it well. And so, the Holy Spirit, the Helper, is there to fill us.
But not only us! This promise is for our children too. The Holy Spirit is there to help them, to teach them, to remind them of all that God has said to them!
This powerful truth has guided my prayer time lately. I’ve simply asked the Holy Spirit to be our Helper. I’ve invited him to teach us and to remind us, to be near my children even when I am not. To instruct and help and redirect the minds and hearts of me and my family.
And as I have, I have found the next section of John 14 to be true.
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid. John 14:27, ESV
Help and peace for us. Help and peace for our children.
We have not been abandoned in this wonderful and weighty task of motherhood and discipleship. Instead, the Holy Spirit is there with us and with our children ready to empower us with wisdom and knowledge and peace, unlike anything we’ve ever known.
So let not your heart be troubled. The questions will come for you and for your children, but there is one full of love and power on our side. One whose ear is turned to our pleas for help, who hears it and says, “Helper is my very name.”