How can I preserve my children from bad things happening to them?

By Blogger Dr. Karin Heller


I’m terrified that something bad is going to happen to my children.  I know that most parents have this feeling too, and feel the need to try to protect their children, but I also know that many things are out of my control and that I can’t keep my kids in a bubble. I have found comfort in the Bible before, but no matter how I try I can’t find a way to let go of this fear and have faith that my children are in God’s hands. How can I let this fear go? I want to have faith, but I can’t seem to detach my feeling for my children from trusting God with things that are out of my control. And when bad things do happen, how can I explain to my children, on a level they understand, why bad things happen to them or to other people?

– Allie

Dear Allie,

Dr. Karin Heller

Your problem can only be fixed if you let the attachment to your children go. A French proverb says, “Get detached from things before they get detached from you!” Your children, one day, will leave you, believe it or not, like it or not. If you learn to get detached from your children now, little by little, then you will not suffer, or at least you will suffer much less the day your children quit. Women in particular struggle with this problem. They want to control to the very end whatever they have given birth to! So, how can you progressively learn “to let go?”

As a Christian mom you did not give birth to your children to keep them, but to let them go so that they may become believers on their own and follow Christ! You could only give them human life while Christ can give them eternal life. If you don’t let them go, they may miss ETERNAL life! This would be really too bad!!! You cannot protect them from death, only Christ can bring them into LIFE! Therefore, do whatever you can to make them love Christ.

Don’t try to transform your kids in what you want them to be. Ask God for what he wants them to be and support in your kids whatever is according to God’s design. Give to God what belongs to God! If YOU and your children belong to God you’ll find them in God again! If you wish to keep your kids in the long run, then let them go to be what God wants them to be and make sure you, too, wholly belong to God! As you see, the big problem is to figure out what it means to belong to God. What did it mean for Jesus to belong to God? It meant for him to go through hardships for the love of his father and return to God by standing firm in faith that God had the power to guide him safely through the hardships of this life!

– Karin

Dr. Karin Heller is a professor on the theology faculty at Whitworth University.Her blog, Table Talk with Dr. Karin Heller, features her responses to questions that students have asked her over the years.  Check back each week to see new posts, and if you have a question leave it in the comment section below.

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