I’ve read a lot of articles about parents and decision fatigue, specifically regarding schools. Do I send my kids back to physical school? Do I switch to private school? Do I homeschool? Do I choose distance learning? These are real and big decisions.

For a variety of reasons, my family and I are choosing to homeschool. This is a big change for us, and it won’t necessarily be easy. See, I love sending my kids to school. I love walking up to the bus stop with my coffee in hand, talking with the other neighborhood parents, watching our kids run around and climb a tree before the big yellow bus pulls up the hill.

RELATED: As the School Year Nears, Nothing I Choose Feels Right

I call my kids over, give them a blessing and a kiss, and send them on their way knowing they will be invested in and taught by amazing, loving teachers all day long, surrounded by their beloved friends. The community element of school is important to me. But we are stepping away from that this year and quite honestly, it’s been one of the easier decisions we have had to make for our family in our specific circumstances.

It is the daily decisions that are the hardest for me.

Can my kids have a play date with yet another family and expand our circle? I really need to go to the grocery store; do I take my kids with me? I have preferred to have my groceries delivered for years because I already didn’t like taking my kids to the store. They fight, they beg for treats or candy, they whine, and they wrestle. Now I don’t like taking my kids to the store because I have to mask them up, remind them not to touch things, and constantly tell them to keep their distance from people. And they still wrestle.

These daily decisions are exhausting and I know I’m not alone. Decisions are hard, especially when you are making decisions on behalf of other people whether that be kids, an elderly parent, or someone else. Lately, I hear more and more people announcing they are tired and just “done” with this new reality we are living in.

RELATED: No, I Don’t Know What We’re Having For Dinner—I’m Just So Tired of Making Decisions

While praying over our collective exhaustion and “done-ness,” Deuteronomy 31:8 came to my mind. I love this version from the Message:

“God is striding ahead of you. He’s right there with you. He won’t let you down; He won’t leave you. Don’t be intimidated. Don’t worry.”

God strides ahead of us. A stride is a long, decisive step in a specific direction. Let that sink in for a minute—God doesn’t walk slowly or timidly, He strides ahead of us.

It makes me think of a mom who is braver than I am, taking her child to the grocery store. She holds her child’s hand, striding through the parking lot with her big, long steps as her child holds her hand tightly, trying to keep up. Mom knows how to avoid cars, when to stop, when to cross, and the best door to use to get into their destination. Mom knows where to go even if the child is distracted by everything else going on around them—she is always there, one step ahead.

RELATED: In Pandemic Parenting, What if There is No Good Choice?

No matter how distracted we are, no matter how tired we are, no matter how confused we feel about where we are heading, no matter how scary the future may seem, God is decisively leading the way for us.

He isn’t going to change his direction or let us down, and that gives me hope and eases my worry.

Yes, everything feels like a lot right now, but even though we are exhausted and unsure and overwhelmed and full of doubt, God strides on and he invites us to walk with Him. He’s holding out His hand for you to hold. Stride on, sister.

So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our new book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available now!

Order Now

Steph Thurling

Steph Thurling is a co-founder of Raising Prayerful Kids, a ministry that equips and encourages parents to be praying with their kids in a meaningful way. She is passionate about faith formation at home, almond milk lattes, deep friendships, and beagles. She lives in Minnesota (even though she hates the cold) with her husband and three kids.

God Has You

In: Faith, Motherhood
Woman hugging herself while looking to the side

Holding tight to the cold, sterile rail of the narrow, rollaway ER bed, I hovered helplessly over my oldest daughter. My anxious eyes bounced from her now steadying breaths to the varying lines and tones of the monitor overhead. Audible reminders of her life that may have just been spared. For 14 years, we’d been told anaphylaxis was possible if she ingested peanuts. But it wasn’t until this recent late autumn evening we would experience the fear and frenzy of our apparent new reality. My frantic heart hadn’t stopped racing from the very moment she struggled to catch a breath....

Keep Reading

My Husband Having a Stroke at 30 Wasn’t in Our Plans

In: Faith, Living
Husband and wife, selfie, color photo

“‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’” (Jeremiah 29:11, NIV) This verse in the book of Jeremiah has long been a favorite of mine. In fact, it’s felt relevant across many life events. Its simple, yet powerful reminder has been a place of solace, perhaps even a way to maintain equilibrium when I’ve felt my world spinning a bit out of control. In this season of starting fresh and new year intentions, I find great comfort in knowing...

Keep Reading

She Left Him on Valentine’s Day

In: Faith, Marriage
Husband kissing wife on cheek, color photo

“Can you believe that?” Those were the dreaded knife-cutting whispers I heard from across the table. I sunk deeper into my chair. My hopes fell as everyone would forever remember that I had left my fiancée on Valentine’s Day. Maybe one day it would just dissipate like the dream wedding I had planned or the canceled plane tickets for the Hawaiian honeymoon. Some bridesmaids and guests had already booked plane tickets. It was my own nightmare that kept replaying in my head over and over again. I had messed up. Big time. To be honest, if it made any difference,...

Keep Reading

God was In the Room for Our Daughter’s Open Heart Surgery

In: Faith, Motherhood
Child's hand with IV

I’ve had a strong faith for as long as I can remember, but I always felt bad that I never had a “testimony.” I had never gone through something that made me sit back and say, “Wow, God is real, He is here.” I have always felt it to my core, but no moment had ever stopped me dead in my tracks to where there was no denying that it was God. And then, that moment happened to me on December 5. After five months of fervently praying for a miracle for our daughter, the day came for her heart...

Keep Reading

A Benediction for the Worn Out Mother

In: Faith, Motherhood
Woman leaning against kitchen counter, black-and-white photo

Blessed are you, Father, for bestowing upon me the honor of motherhood. For allowing me to experience the deep joy of bringing forth life—a joy I often take for granted and instead choose to begrudge. My children’s cries and demands have worn me down. I do not recognize myself. I selfishly long for the old me. My thoughts are an intangible mess of never-ending tasks, self-criticism, and comparison to those around me. RELATED: God Sees You, Weary Mama But Your word says you are near to the broken-hearted and downtrodden. You do not forget the cause of the tired and the...

Keep Reading

God Doesn’t Forget You When You’re Lost and Unsure

In: Faith, Living
Woman looking into camera, color photo

I’ve been wandering around feeling lost for over a year. Wondering where I’m going, what I’m supposed to be doing. Nothing seems to make sense. I felt purposeless. I felt stuck. I questioned everything: my faith, my marriage, my career—if it could be questioned, I doubted it. And I was completely clueless how to fix the funk. For over a year, I’ve been in the wilderness. I’ve wanted to find my way, but every path seemed like another dead end. The wilderness. I’ve been residing there. Not feeling fed. Not feeling heard. Not feeling seen. Struggling to find a purpose....

Keep Reading

And Then, the Darkness Lifts

In: Faith, Motherhood
Mother with baby smiling

Today when I woke, it had lifted, like sunshine peeking after rain. And as my toddler clicked on the lamp beside my bed to see her mama, I saw me too. I got out of bed and I walked down the hall. And the coffee pot sat there waiting for me, as always, like my husband at the kitchen table with his books. He smiled at me, and I think he could tell as I took my medicine, took down a mug, and poured my coffee. I opened the secretary desk and pulled out the chair and my Bible, like...

Keep Reading

Joy in This Stillness

In: Faith, Motherhood
Mother holding sleeping toddler, color photo

I woke up suddenly in a sweat while it was still dark. Except for the humming of the oxygen machine, the house was silent. For a moment, I thought I might have time to enjoy a cup of coffee before my son woke up. However, a glance at my daughter’s crib told me that feeding my caffeine addiction would have to wait. My daughter has a terminal brain disorder called Lissencephaly, a side effect of which is uncontrolled epilepsy. Many mornings, a subconscious recognition that she is having episodes of repeated seizures rouses me from my sleep. Throwing on a...

Keep Reading

Sometimes All We Can Do Is Say How Hard Motherhood Is

In: Faith, Motherhood
Tired mom with baby in foreground

I have been sitting in the peace and quiet of the office to do some long overdue Bible study for all of five minutes when the baby wakes up. With a heavy sigh that is becoming all too common, I go to the bedroom to pick up my fussy, probably getting sick, 8-month-old daughter who has been asleep for approximately 15 minutes. I bring her to the office and put her on the floor with some new books and toys. Sitting back down in front of my own new book of Bible maps and charts, I begin reading once again....

Keep Reading

Sometimes I Want to Skip This Part

In: Faith, Living
Husband and wife sitting on swing, color photo

Kelly Clarkson’s new album Chemistry is about the arch of her relationship with her husband and their divorce. The first song on the album is called “skip this part.” It begins with her asking if she can skip the heartbreak. She begs to jump over the deep pain that came with her divorce. The song is haunting and beautiful and says things like, “my heart can’t forget the ache before the mend.” She is honest and vulnerable, admitting she is not sure if she has the strength to get through the pain. She just wants it all to be over, for...

Keep Reading