Let me be the first to say that I am a VERY protective parent and yes, many times overprotective. I think in the day and times that we live in, you have to be. I don’t trust just anyone to influence my kid! However, after being in ministry for many years and watching my husband coach my son’s football team there is one thing I am trying to be intentional not to be overprotective about. This decision is not just coming from watching the kids and parents, but also watching adults who were overprotected from disappointment and failure as children.
I watch people constantly struggle with failure and not know how to handle disappointment to the point that they fear making any decisions. They are so afraid of making the wrong decision and being disappointed that they refuse to decide anything. I watch people be so afraid of failure that they never take a risk. I see people all that of the time that will have things not go their way and it breaks them down. Life is full of disappointments and failures. It breaks my heart to see an adult that can not handle life. They think it is the end of the world if things don’t work out the way they think they should, or if they don’t get everything they want the way they want it. Oh my, really watch out if someone doesn’t like them or think they are the best thing since sliced bread because they take any type of rejection as failure. I assumed these people were just weak minded or spoiled. I was very wrong.
After watching the way our culture parents, I realized these people had just been overprotected as kids. I don’t mean being strict and cautious. I mean helicopter parenting. Swooping in to rescue your kid before anyone can disappoint them. I watch parents get so upset because another kid doesn’t like their kid or said something ugly to them. Don’t get me wrong, no child should be bullied. But not all kids are going to get along and like each other and that is ok! Our kids need to learn how to deal with stuff like that in a healthy way so that when they are adults things like this do not have such devastating effects on them. Their coach may be disappointed in them, their music teacher will tell them when they play wrong notes, they may not have ANY talent in what they are attempting and that is ok! We need to experience failure, disappointment and things not going our way. I know we wish our children never had to be disappointed or hurt, but what kind of young men and women would that turn them in to? We need our kids to grow up with wisdom and discipline. I want my son to have strong faith in God and be a productive member of society. If he is going to do anything great, people will come against him and I want him to be able to handle that. I don’t want him to never do anything great because he can’t handle that.
The experiences we have make us who we are. I am stronger because of every failure and disappointment I had as a kid. I learned how to manage risks and how to deal with things in a healthy way. I also learned real faith! The faith that even if I experience disappointment, if I fail, if people hate me, if I make a terrible decision or if I just can’t do something that God is still with me. He is still for me and He loves me.
Maybe you are a parent, I encourage you to let kids experience life and teach them along the way. Teach them to be overcomers!
Maybe this is you! You are tired of not being able to make decisions or you are tired of not stepping out, I encourage you to let God take over your life. Trust Him completely and let go. Ask Him to give you strength when you get disappointed, and to put your faith in Him not in your circumstances. Be an overcomer!