Skip to main content

Kindergarten--Who's Really in Control?

Our "Baby Girl" started Kindergarten this week. She is all smiles in this picture.

But pictures can be deceiving.

Actually, she's been dreading the start of Kindergarten. She's cried at the thought of going. She had a wonderful school-like experience this summer, and she's missing her friends and teachers from there. She doesn't want to make a new start with all new people. She's afraid of learning her way around in new buildings and learning new rules. She doesn't want to leave mommy and her brother and sister during the day. All these things legitimately cause anxiety for us grown-ups when we are transitioning. We thought, "Once she has her first day, she will have so much fun, and that will ease her transition anxiety."

But we were wrong.

Her first day was terrible. All of the fears in her little mind came to fruition: she got lost in the hallway, she didn't make a new best friend "as good as Ivy, or Abby or Emma." She only has one teacher instead of 4, so there's less affection to go around. And worst of all to her--she was forced to enter the public bathroom and flush the toilet--something which scares her so deeply, that it paralyzes her in her tracks. When we picked her up, the teacher told us that she had cried all day. The few things that she did enjoy did not outweigh to her all the challenges.

That night after her siblings went to bed, she cried even more, pleading for us to let her stay home. Of course we wanted to say, "Yes, Baby Girl, you can stay here with us."

But we didn't.

We cried with her; we prayed with her. We tried to encourage her. Then we sent her off to school again the next day.

When day 2 produced just as many tears at home, I thought, "Maybe she's too little. Maybe she's too fragile. What if she should be sheltered more? What if she's like a baby tree that is not ready to withstand the elements yet?" My wise and grounded husband helped alleviate my anxiety. He said, "We prayed about this decision. We felt like this school, for this semester, for this child was the best choice for a long list of reasons," [reasons I meant to post here months ago but never finished typing out]. Karl continued, "Sheltering is needed for a time, and then when it's not, to keep sheltering is just trying to hold on to control. It's thinking that I can do a better job of taking care of her than God can. If/when we Home-School (a very likely possibility for our future), it won't be because we want control. It will be because it is the best place for our kid(s) at that time." Gosh, I love that man.

But letting go of control is still hard.

The next day, when school ended, she hopped in the car and said, "I was still scared...But when I walked in the bathroom, I prayed to God and asked Him to give me courage, and He helped me not be afraid of the noise, and I flushed all by myself."

Tears in my eyes--good tears. More important to us than her ease of transition is her relationship with Jesus. Our biggest hope, and most common prayer is that she (and all our kids) would personally experience God, and that her faith would be her own, not an imitation of what she sees in us. The fact that she experienced intimacy with her Heavenly Father in the Kindergarten bathroom is precious to us.

HE does a better job of caring for her than I can. HE is in control.



Popular posts from this blog

Top 10 Reasons Why People Don't Read the Bible

I've spent 15+ years in ministry, and I've noticed a problem:
people who say they believe the Bible haven't actually read it, and people who don't believe the Bible don't want to read it. My response to both groups is this: YOU ARE MISSING OUT! Why? Because the Bible is the best proven source for life-changing joy and peace. And since it's misquoted and misrepresented all the time, you need to actually read it yourself in order to know if you do/don't agree with it or do/don't want to read it.

When I mention this, it usually surfaces at least one of these 10 barriers that prevent folks from completing it. Do you relate to any of these?



10 Reasons Most People Don't Read the Bible, Refuted 1. I'm not religious. The Bible is the best-selling book of all time. Jesus has been hailed by secular sources as the most influential person to ever walk on the earth. Most people, even those who don't worship God, agree that Jesus was a good person with a …

Essential Christian Book List

There are impressive blog posts with images and links and amazon store commissions. This ain't one of those posts. My list doesn't contain the most recent pop culture Christian trends. Instead it's simple, dependable, filled with classics--some new, some old, and some perhaps forgotten.

*Note: I'm not calling anything a "must-read" except for the Bible. It's on a list all its own. It's the absolute most essential collection of written words ever, and if you need convincing, please read my previous post about it. 
These books help in your journey to better understanding the Bible, the Gospel, and your identity as a child of God:Study Bible (ESV/NLT/NIV/CSB)Reason for God, Tim KellerFaith is Not a Feeling, Ney BaileyThe Normal Christian Life, Watchman NeeMaster Plan of Evangelism, Robert ColemanMore Than a Carpenter, Josh McDowellThe 3D Gospel, Jayson GeorgesVictory Over the Darkness, Neil T. AndersonWith, Skye JethaniThe Screwtape Letters, C.S. Lewis Yo…

Life After Summer Mission

(originally published 2013, updated 2018)
If what started out as the hardest summer of your life
-working the longest hours you've ever worked,
-being stretched physically, emotionally, and spiritually,
-relying on God to make it to the end of the week (much less 5 or 10 weeks),
-wondering how you were gonna live happily for that long with all these new people...

If you thought all of that was challenging, you had no idea that the biggest challenge came at the end-

-after God had pushed you through to the other side:
where the work seemed tiring but in a rewarding way,
where the schedule stretched you thin, but you now know yourself and God better because of carving out time for Him,
where you stepped into scary situations and saw God show up in ways only He can,
where you now know once strangers soul to soul, backwards, forwards and sideways, and you love them anyways,
where you experienced that they love YOU in spite of every flaw you possess,
and that saying goodbye to mission …