Are you in full back to school preparations? Or maybe you've started school already (gasp!)?
Or perhaps you're like me and still (quite happily) living with your head in the summer sand, ignoring the inevitable back to school madness for as long as you can?
No matter where you're at, there seems to be a universal sentiment all moms share this time of year:
“I'm not at all ready for the school year to start.”
Back to school brings change. More structure. A return to hard challenges that maybe we've been able to partially escape during these long summer days.
And even in the best situations, all that change means a heck of a lot of stress for mama.
Stress that makes us want to go back to enjoying our pool and popsicle days, thank you.
Yes, there's stress from all the planning and organizing. But I believe that (if we are totally honest with ourselves) the real reason that this time of year is so stressful is because we're all wondering:
How in the world am I going to do this again?
You know what I mean: The planning. The schedule organizing. All that driving. The hours spent explaining a concept (sometimes over and over) to a child.
We want to believe the lie that “this year will be different,” and that “if I only did XYZ then life would be perfect.”
Even if we try our best to prepare for the back to school onslaught, the reality is that life never ever ends up as we exactly how we thought it would. We wake up mid-October realizing that, despite our best efforts, someone gave us the same kids to parent and many of last year's issues have come back in full force.
And that's enough to drive a Type-A mom like me pretty darn crazy (can you relate?!).
How can we face the new school year triumphantly as moms who are:
…excited and enthusiastic about another year's worth of learning?
…ready to make the changes we need to, but also open enough to accept what may not change?
I want to share with you 5 truths that I tell myself this time of year.
Friend, I'm a regular mom just like you and I know these truths will help you find the peace and clarity you need right now (because they help me with that too)!
Yes, you can let go of the angst and apprehension of back to school!
You can courageously face another school year with confidence, ready for anything that comes your way.
This back to school (and all year long) you can have the peace we're all so desperate for.
The Whole Truth (and Nothing But the Truth)
First, let's get something clear: This school year, you will fail in some way, shape, or other (and so will I).
We will mess up. Our kids will mess up. And our school year won’t turn out like we expected.
I’m not saying this to trouble you, or to add more weight to your load.
I just believe that we must be completely honest with ourselves here before we go any further.
This is reality… but I want you to know that you’re not alone in facing it.
I will be going through it. And millions of other moms around the world will be going through it too.
But most importantly, Someone else wants to go through it with you: God.
Does God care about moms and back to school stress? Absolutely. He cares about all the other parts of our lives too.
In fact, the author of truth, the creator of all things, and the one who holds all things together wants to remind us that we were never meant to carry any of our burdens alone (1 Peter 5:7).
Here are the 5 truths I remind myself during the stress of back to school, and any day when I feel less than able to handle this ever-changing, ultra chaotic mom life.
Read these as if God Himself is speaking to you (because, friend, He is).
Truth #1: You don’t have to do it on your own.
I am the great “I AM” and I want to walk with you through your everyday situations.
- I will be with you on the days when you don’t know what to say to that child that won’t sit still.
- I can give you a calm spirit when dealing with kids who insist on fighting non-stop.
- If you choose to homeschool, I’ll give you inspired teaching ideas when the teacher’s guide isn’t cutting it.
- I'll remind you that even in the endless shuttling of kids and piles and piles of laundry, you have great value and purpose.
- I’ll give you endless patience when you are tired, exhausted and just want to quit.
I'll be here through it all. Call out in prayer to me, and then tune your ears to hear my answer.
I promise I won't leave you alone in this!
Truth #2: You don’t have to have it all figured out now.
I’ve provided enough grace and power for you to get through each moment one at a time.
I’m not asking you to go two months, two days or even two hours into the future. Rest with me here and trust. Believe that I will show you what to do each day, step by step.
It takes trust and a dependence on me, which I know is not always easy.
But each time you give up a little of that control to me–releasing your grip on how things “must be done”–you'll find yourself relaxing and trusting me more.
When you are confused or overwhelmed, pray to me and ask for wisdom for this moment. Trust that we can get through this together.
Truth #3: You don’t have to make it all happen.
Whether you choose to homeschool or your kids attend a traditional school, you still are your child's teacher.
Your kids are looking to you for guidance and wisdom, especially as they transition through the sometimes rocky years of adolescence. They need your words of encouragement. They need to understand both boundaries and grace.
You know this, and I know that you desperately want to help them through these transitions because you are a good mom and you love your kids deeply.
Sweet daughter, I am a good father too and I want to not only help them as they grow, I promise to equip you to help them.
Here’s the key: You don’t need to plan for those priceless teaching moments. Cry out to me with your concerns and fears for your children. Keep your heart soft and open as you trust me with these very important matters.
My daughter, just be faithful and be available. Keep your eyes open. And let me take care of the rest.
Truth #4: You will fail, even when you give your best.
Expect the mistakes to come. Be ready for them and try not to be surprised by them.
Yes, give it your all, my daughter.
But please, please remember this: I don’t expect you to do this job perfectly, so you shouldn’t either.
When the mistakes come, see them as an opportunity for me to shine and for you to grow.
Your journey as a mom doesn’t have to be perfect to be good.
Truth #5: When you fail, remember that your failures don’t define who you are.
Nothing can change the way I feel about you and your kids.
Nothing you do can take you or them from my grasp. Nothing! (Romans 8:31-38).
Your value to me is greater than anything! You are so important to me that I proved my love for you by giving up my life for you.
I formed you, I made you, and I placed you in this exact place in time (and determined that you were the perfect mom for your kids) (Psalm 139).
I am bigger than your failures, and in my own incomprehensible way, I can use those failures to bring a beauty greater than you could have ever expected.
On the toughest days when you're tired, exhausted and don't want to go on, let me remind you that my love never gives up and will never run out on you. Nothing that you will encounter this year can change my love for you.
I will forever be here, fighting for you!
Mom, Get the Encouragement You Need (Everyday!)
I pray those truths from God are helpful to you!
God wants to encourage you in every area of your life–not just during times of stress!
I'd love to share with you more about how a living, active relationship with God can change everything. I know this to be true because 22 years ago my life was radically changed when I chose to begin a relationship with Christ! You can read my story here.
Here are other posts that talk about how to develop this type of relationship with God for yourself:
5 Step Method to Study the Bible (this is aimed for kids, but I use this method too!)
Other Posts to Encourage You During Back to School:
And if this post encouraged you, please be sure to pin it and share!