In the past, I struggled with the need to know how my daughter’s journey would end. Abusing alcohol and drugs, engaging in self-harm, and suffering with a mental illness, not knowing the outcome filled me with anguish. Tormenting thoughts produced endless nightmares. I found no relief by day or night.
Maybe like you, I craved reassurance that one day everything would be okay. Then I remembered Psalms 127:5:
Great is the Lord and mighty in power; his understanding has no limit.
God understood my situation and my need, but I still struggled. There was a season when I couldn’t smile or laugh anymore.I didn’t know if my daughter was dead or alive. How could I be joyful? Having fun felt wrong. Would I ever be able to laugh again? I didn’t know.
Over 18 years have passed since those days. Fear, worry, and sorrow were my constant companions back then, destroying peace of mind. What if this happens? What if that happens? What if, what if, what if. I bet you’ve done that.
I couldn’t handle the burden on my own anymore. The weight was too heavy. The pressure was too much, too debilitating.
By nature, I’m a happy, positive person who enjoys laughing and smiling. What happened to me? Who had I become? Sad, scared, and lost, when would the real me return? Could she?
You can too.
How Did I Find Myself Again?
Because I believe in a personal, compassionate, caring God who created all things, I found myself again when:
- I decided to trust Him enough to accept the unknown future.
- I chose to believe He loved my daughter far more than I ever could.
- I gave my daughter back to Him who gave her to me in the first place—including my need to know the outcome.
- My faith gave me confidence that God would be with me no matter what happened.
- I remembered the power of God.
As I gradually learned to let go and trust more, my nightmares decreased, my anxiety lessened, and my heavy heart lightened. The ability to laugh was even restored. Peace also returned (for the most part), despite the fact that my daughter wasn’t fixed one hundred percent. Of course, I have my moments, but I’ve accepted and come to terms with an unknown future because I know God is control. Therefore I could release my grip on the need to know. I’m more comfortable with being uncomfortable.
Only God could do all of that.
However, when your trust and faith in God grow, it doesn’t guarantee everything will be okay. Your child may end up in rehab, jail, or a psych ward. They may experience long-term effects of their choices and issues … they might even die.
I’m so sorry to say this. Any of these could happen. However …
I believe we can still trust God with the unknowns of our troubled child’s future. With Him, the awful possibilities of what could destroy them won’t destroy us.
He is almighty, all-powerful God who can do anything. He will be with you and your child. He will never leave you—or them.
Friend, I challenge you to surrender. Give your son or daughter back to God, the only One who knows every detail of their lives. Remember, Great is the Lord and mighty in power; his understanding has no limit (Psalms 127:5 NIV). He can help you make peace wtih the unknown like He did for me.
You can “entrust your desire to know into his all-knowing.”
– Sylvia Gunther, The Father’s Business
What the Bible Has to Say
Here are some additional Bible verses that have helped me:
The Lord is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid? (Psalms 27:1 NIV).
Peace I leave with you, my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid (John 14:27 NIV).
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding… (Proverbs 3:5 NIV).
But He knows the way that I take… (Job 23:10 NIV).
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are my ways your ways… (Isaiah 55:8 NIV).
A Prayer for You
All-knowing God, help me surrender my need to know how my troubled child’s struggle will end. Help me make peace with the unknowns. Remind me of Your trustworthiness, unconditional love, constant presence, and mighty power. You’ve got my child and You’ve got me in Your hands. No matter what happens, I will trust You. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Recommended Book for You
When I Lay My Isaac Down, Carol Kent