By Allie Molina
Many of us have a general understanding of the meaning for ‘disciple.’ Images of Jesus and His disciples may come to mind, or a more modern day go-to portrayal of students in class. When we send our kiddos to school, we anticipate they will learn knowledge from their teachers. In Jesus’ day, disciples were not only understood to be in the process of learning a specific expertise from their teacher/master/rabbi, but they were meant to learn their teachers’ way of being and engaging with the world.
Reflect on the story of the disciples with Jesus in the boat. [Here’s a refresher video for anyone – https://www.bible.com/videos/3177-mark-4-35-41-from-lumoproject-dot-com].
When the disciples woke Jesus, he did not jump up and join in their commotion. But His response brought calmness, peace, and an opportunity for growth in the disciples’ way of being in the midst of chaos their world presented at that moment. There is so much rich knowledge this account presents us, but here in this moment, let’s allow it to bring our own responses into question. If the lake is our world (also presenting us with tumultuous chaos), who is in our boat with us that we could consider disciples? If you are a parent, instantly you know you are discipling your children. We can tell our children to not be afraid, to stop worrying, to not be so anxious, and so on. But, if we ourselves do not model responses of assured peace and trust in the midst of anxiety, we are showing our children that our Prince of Peace does not provide any more than the provision and state of our world. I hope we know this is not true. Some of us may be questioning that right now, I get it. So let’s think practically to help us get there. If we are to not be overcome by our world (i.e. anxiety, fear, anger), we cannot respond in the same ways our world does. Consider these reflection questions:
- How do you tend to respond to unexpected bad news? How about the nightly/morning news station? Or the posts of those who are on the ‘other side’ of the political issue?
- How does this response effect your moments/hours/day/week/month following?
- How are your immediate people affected?
- How can we do better? What needs to change?
If you recognize something needs to change, now is the best time to start. Where/how/what will help us begin? You may find benefit from:
- Talk with community (yes, even over Zoom)
- Self-Care (are you just completely overwhelmed? Do what Jesus was doing in the boat – getting away to rest)
- Schedule and build a relationship with a counselor or mentor
- Research calm breathing techniques
- Get active
Finally, if you are a parent with a Pre-K/Early Elementary kiddo we have a resource in the works specifically for your school year.
Parenting in an Anxious World
6-Week Zoom Class
September 16th 2020 through October 21st 2020,
Wednesdays from Noon – 1:00p CST
Led by professional counselors Allie Molina and Brenda Neyens, Parenting in an Anxious World provides ways to relieve anxiety and stress as parents and kiddos navigate an online school-year together. You and your child will learn some very practical approaches to lessening anxiety. While the skills are transferrable to additional children, we ask that only one child attend the zoom class. We encourage your child’s participation, but they do not need to be present for class.
Class size of 4 – 8 households, registration is $60 per household, which includes one or two caregivers and a child age 5 to 9.
You can apply for a partial scholarship, which will be based on need and availability of funds. To sign up for this group, contact Allie at firstname.lastname@example.org.