Bible verses about trusting God are not in short supply. As believers, we know the wisdom and truth behind placing our trust in God rather than ourselves. But when it comes to trusting God with our children, there’s often a tension there, and as parents, we can struggle with the release.
In our parenting journeys, it’s not uncommon to wrestle with the issue of trust. It happens in the big and the small things, and for parents sending a child to college for the first time, it’s an experience that can catch you off guard 一 even grip you with fear. Because you quickly realize that much of what you could manage or control during the first 18 years of that child’s life 一 friendships, social boundaries, faith, and more 一 suddenly falls outside your grip.
How do you trust God in ALL circumstances?
While I hate to be the bearer of bad news, this struggle to trust God in all things, specifically with your children, doesn’t end once they become adults. My children are out of the nest. While I can’t give them credit for full-on “adulting” just yet 一 in graduate school, still on our insurance, etc. 一 they’re good kids moving forward in a positive way.
And yet, I sometimes find myself lying awake at night
wondering worrying consumed with situations and circumstances my adult children are facing or, even worse, ignoring. In my heart and in my head, I know God works all things for our good and his glory (Romans 8:28). I find comfort in His sovereignty for my life and those I love. But there’s just something about learning to let go of our children 一 at whatever stage they’re in 一 that isn’t always easy.
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To be perfectly candid, I think I expected the “worry” to cease as they moved beyond undergrad. And yet still, I find myself focused on so much that I cannot control.
Of course, the good times are great. When everyone’s healthy and happy, and things in life fall neatly into place, it’s easy to say we trust God.
One of the verses I return to time and again is Proverbs 3:5-6, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him and he will make your path straight.” It’s a wonderful verse to memorize and hold as an anchor for trusting the Lord completely.
I believe every word of those verses. I have shared them with friends; I have preached them to myself. I always circle back to God’s sovereignty. His perfect plan for all creation. His unfathomable love for each of us.
But then …
What about when:
- Their hearts are broken.
- The relationships they long for don’t happen.
- They are lonely and struggling to make post-college friendships.
- They feel uncertain about their future.
- They have wandered in their faith.
- They’re in relationships that aren’t healthy.
- They’ve developed unhealthy habits or addictions.
- They’re facing a devastating medical diagnosis.
- They’re floundering in adulthood.
That list could go on and on, so what then! While some things get easier once your kids leave the nest 一 There are some small blessings in not having to be aware of their every move! 一 sometimes, parenting those adult children can be downright heartwrenching.
So what do we do? How do we learn to trust God in all circumstances? Well, it’s a daily practice of turning to Him first, surrendering our fears, worries, and anxieties about our kids to the only One who loves them more than we do (Matthew 6:25-34). Because in his Word, we will find verses that meet us where we are, helping us trust in the Lord, overcome doubt, navigate difficult times.
Day in. Day out. Moment by moment. In all things.
Trust in the Lord | Bible verses you can turn to in prayer
So what does the Bible say about trusting God? Well, plenty. As it relates to our children, we first have to release them from our plans, our desires, our dreams.
Ultimately, what I want most is for my children to bend their lives to God’s will, not mine. If you are a believer, then I imagine you feel the same. We want them to remember 一 even in seasons of struggle 一 the importance of God’s call on their life, to recall that moment when they recognized their need for Jesus.
And when, if, or as they wander, prayer is where we should turn. The verses below help us trust God: when things get difficult, when we start to worry, when our heart is hurting. Of course, there are so many more, and our relationship with God and prayer is not like Aladdin’s lamp.
The key here is the posture of our heart found in the word “abide.” When we abide in Christ, we rest in the truth of his word; we turn to him daily for direction, understanding and guidance. And it’s in this act that our thoughts and prayers begin to align with God’s will.
Bible verses about trusting God
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.
And those who know your name put their trust in you, for you, O LORD, have not forsaken those who seek you.
When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.
Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your hearts before him; God is a refuge for us.
Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the LORD that will stand.
Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flames shall not consume you.
The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.
Why are you so afraid? Have you still no faith?
If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, as whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you.
What does trusting God mean?
Trusting God means trusting him with ALL things. Not all but this, or all but that. It means all, and it is hard. It’s a surrender, which often doesn’t come naturally.
God always hears and answers our prayers (Psalm 116:1-2, 1 John 5:14-15, 2 Chronicles 7:14, Jeremiah 29:12, to name a few ). But this doesn’t mean his response to our prayers always aligns with the timing or outcome we hold as “right.” Some of my friends have faced unimaginable challenges in their parenting: death, addiction, disabilities, cancer.
It can be hard to reconcile some of these things with James’s teaching to “count it all joy … when you face trials of various kinds” (James 1: 2-4).
However, my friend Heidi, whose daughter faced a daunting cancer diagnosis in her senior year of high school, recently shared the following, and I think her words perfectly encapsulate what it means to push aside fears and parent, instead, from a place of trust in God’s goodness:
“Today, I am in Houston. Routine check-up and scans for Rylie York. On August 9th we will celebrate 2 years survivorship post transplant. As I sit and wait in the waiting room while Rylie is back for her CT scan, … the quiet time causes me to marvel at what has transpired in Rylie’s life over the past 3 1/2 years. Never in a million years could I have dreamed this story. I am and will always remain in awe of the way God has woven this tapestry, full of beauty and heartache, into her story. Being at Texas Children’s always reminds me to let go … So today I recommit myself to full surrender (with all my children, all my worries, all the fuzziness in life) and letting God take the wheel. This does not come easy for me, but the beauty and peace it brings are so cathartic and healing. Put the baby in the basket and trust HIM.”
God redeems all he allows. So “put the baby in the basket.*” Every. Single. Day.
Trusting God: questions for reflection & response
- Where am I holding on too tightly? Is there an area of my parenting where I need godly wisdom in knowing how to release my grip?
- What is it about trusting God with [insert name of your child] that is so difficult for me?
- Pray for discernment and wisdom in your parenting. Ask God to help strengthen your faith and trust in him. Like Mark 9:24 shows us, we, too, can cry out, “I believe; help my unbelief!”
Additional biblical resources about trusting God:
- If you are struggling with the death of a loved one, particularly when it feels like life was cut short, here’s a podcast from Proverbs 31 Ministries that might provide some comfort.
- Here’s a collection of Bible verses specific to helping you trust God with your children, organized around topics such as “Salvation and Belief,” “For God’s Protection and Safety to Cover Them,” “For God’s Light and Truth to Always Lead Their Way,” and more.
*If you are unfamiliar with this phrase, please read Exodus 1:22–2:1-10, where we see the birth of Moses and the resulting courage and faith of his mother, Jochebed.