by Cindi McMenamin
I’ll never forget the summer we took our 4-year-old daughter to the John Muir Woods near San Francisco. Dana was trying to keep up with two boys of similar age who were running on logs, climbing up and jumping off of rocks, and having a grand adventure.
We were having a great day, except…each time Dana climbed up and ran across a mossy (that means slippery) log, I would yell: “Be careful, Dana.” My constant warnings were beginning to annoy my husband. Hugh didn’t want his only daughter growing up timid or fearful of trying new things.
By the third or fourth warning, my husband had just about had it. “Stop worrying about her, Cindi, she’s not going to fall and get hurt!”
“You don’t know that, Hugh” I responded. “She could easily fall and get hurt. I just want her to slow down so that won’t happen.”
“She’ll be fine,” Hugh responded with a sense of finality.
As soon as those words left his mouth we heard the shriek. We turned just in time to see Dana slip from a log, fall through the air a few feet, and then roll about 15 feet down a grassy, wooded slope!
My rescue instincts kicked in, and as I bolted toward her, I feared the worst. I envisioned twigs sticking out of her eyeballs, a few broken ribs, abrasions and cuts from the rocks, and — even worse — a concussion from the fall.
I reached her first, relieved to see that she had no twigs sticking out of her eyeballs. She was whimpering, but appeared relatively unscathed.
My husband arrived just behind me and said “What a great fall, Dana! And that was an awesome roll. And look, you’re not even hurt!” At that, she grinned, re-gained her confidence, shook off the dirt from her clothes and started back up the hill to join the boys.
I realize my husband could have been wrong about his “she’ll be fine” theory. Dana could’ve easily hit her head on a rock when she fell, or lost an eye from picking up a twig on her roll down that hill. But she didn’t. And I thanked God the rest of the afternoon that she was protected from my worst fears during that scary-looking fall.
I have been reminded on many occasions throughout my child’s life that her Unseen Protector is always there to cushion her fall and get her back on her feet again. And even when situations look scary, those situations are not outside of His control.
Just as God has always been there for me, He will always be there for you, too. And for my child. And yours.
Can you trust God today that no matter what happens to your children He is there to cushion their fall and get them back on their feet again?
“The Lord makes firm the steps of the one who delights in him; though he may stumble, he will not fall, for the Lord upholds him with his hand.” Psalm 37:23-24 NIV
About the author: Cindi McMenamin is a wife, mom, national speaker, and author of 16 books, including When Women Walk Alone, When a Mom Inspires Her Daughter, and 10 Secrets to Becoming a Worry-Free Mom. She and her husband, Hugh, have been married 30 years and they collaborated on her newest book, 12 Ways to Experience More with Your Husband. She and her family live in Southern California. For more on her resources to strengthen your walk with God, your marriage, or your parenting, see her website: www.StrengthForTheSoul.com.
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Join the conversation: Do you struggle to trust God with your children’s well-being? How has He proved Himself to you?