Heartbreak happens to all of us. It happens when our child is bullied, or loses their position. It happens when they don’t make the school play, club, or team. It happens when they don't get accepted to the college all their friends are going too. It happens when their parents divorce, or one of their parent’s dies prematurely. Our children face grown up issues everyday. Just getting up and going to school can produce anxiety, as they worry about and drill for an active shooter.
We think as parents, that if we can just get our children to grow up as healthy individuals that we can breathe a sigh of relief. But the truth is, even our grown children face pain--failed relationships, depression, job issues, infertility, and financial stressors. Sadly, heartbreak is a part of life. As parents, we naturally want to “fix it” or take the pain away--and we should when it calls for it.
However, there are times when we cannot protect our kids from pain. For my children, illness, bullying, and divorce all became a part of their stories. I realized that despite my desire to take away their pain, sometimes all I could do was walk with them through what they were facing, and point them to the One who truly understood their grief.
With Easter next weekend, I can’t help but think of how impossibly hard it had to have been for God to send His ONLY son to die for us. What horrible pain He must have felt to sit back and watch the gruesome betrayal and pain Christ endured. He could have intervened. He could have stopped it in a second. However, He knew that without Christ’s death and resurrection we would be never be able to be with Him in eternity. How much must God love us and our children to provide a way to Himself that involved the sacrifice of His only Son?
As you prepare to celebrate the incredible gift of salvation this week and the joy of Christ’s resurrection, remember that heartbreak is a part of life. However, Jesus understands suffering and pain firsthand. He desires to come alongside us and love us and our children through it, just like we desire to do that for our children. He only asks that we trust Him through the journey.
So, what can you do when your child is hurting?
Remember to pray. Support your children and encourage them to talk to Jesus, so that when they are grown; they will know Him and how to rely on Him.
Remember that blessings are passed from generation to generation. Simple things like dying Easter eggs can be a simple lesson in what God did for us. (Example: red is the color of Christ's blood, white symbolizes our cleansed hearts, green is color of new life in Christ) Take every moment to gently teach your children. They will not forget these things and they will pass them on to their own children one day.
Listen to and comfort your children. Remind them that pain and heartbreak are a part of life. However, weeping lasts but for a night and joy comes in the morning.
Look too Christ--and remember His resurrection! Because of His incredible love for us, death and heartbreak are not forever. There is a day coming when all pain will be defeated forever!