Talking to Our Kids About Storms

Photograph - Jeans

 

Severe weather events, like what much of the country went through last week, can be incredibly scary. Fear of the unknown, fear of not being in control, and fear of “what if” are all anxiety-inducing thoughts for both adults and children. Adding to fuel to the fire (so to speak), we’ve been bombarded all week with constant news footage about the death and destruction caused by these storms. Meandering our way through heroic stories of self sacrifice and incredible faith, the visuals of how these storms impacted entire towns are heartbreaking and pretty scary! When living in a virtual bubble isn’t a feasible solution, what do we do? How do we talk to our kids about storms?

And how do we even start to calm the anxieties that our little ones might be feeling about storms?

As we head into springtime, depending on their ages, this might be a great opportunity to talk to kids about storms and different types of weather events that are prevalent in your own area. Whether its tornadoes, thunderstorms, hurricanes or even earthquakes, take the time to discuss why we are geographically susceptible to specific weather systems and how these systems form. God has created our marvelous world, and learning about its wonders only reaffirm His greatness and sovereignty.

Kids take most of their emotional cues from us on how to handle life’s chaos. Remember that sometimes “storms” can be metaphors for life’s troubles.How do we handle these storms in our own lives? Do our kids see us praying? Are we showing them that even though we have reason to be scared, we’re instead trusting God in all things?

Like many mommies, I’ve struggled with anxiety. How I choose to walk with the Lord during these storms can either add to the stress of my family or serve as a huge reassuring lesson in trusting God. That, in and of itself, can be a lot of pressure. Sometimes I fail. I forget to take Jesus’ hand and instead attempt to walk through the scary storm all alone. Can you relate? That’s why it’s so important to stay firmly rooted in God’s Word.

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (Romans 13:15)

God’s Word gives us this reassurance whether that fear is rooted in something tangible like a thunderstorm or something less tangible. During times of fear or anxiety, read this verse with your family. Notice that our God is a God of HOPE. That He desires to fill each of us with JOY and PEACE. But there’s one thing He asks us to do… TRUST IN HIM.

Being physically prepared for possible disasters and becoming educated about severe weather conditions that could happen in our own geographical areas is vitally important. Just as important is our spiritual preparedness enabling us to handle the impending storms. For spiritual preparedness, the best survival manual is always God’s Holy Word.

Some good sites to help teach your children about storms as well as help your family prepare for natural disasters are:

Disaster and Emergency Preparedness | weather.com

FEMA: Winter Storm Preparedness: Weather Radios and Disaster Supply Kits

Consumer Alert: Storm Preparedness

Prepare (Earthquake Preparedness)

Weather Wiz Kids (weather information for kids)

Lisa Strnad is an independent contractor in Christian media as a writer, marketing consultant, and public relations specialist. She speaks to Christian women’s groups on the issues of motherhood, home schooling and raising a child with special needs. Lisa and her family make their home in Nashville.