About the Author

Kristen Strong, author of Back Roads to Belonging and Girl Meets Change, writes as a friend offering meaningful encouragement for each season of life so you can see it with hope instead of worry. She and her US Air Force veteran husband, David, have three children and live in Colorado...

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& you will too!
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Reader Interactions


  1. Agreeing and amen-ing! (And I’m going to check out that link on chicken–is it a recipe??)
    While I’m here, I’ll also share my “I’m gonna die” moment with a son that has turned out okay in the end: One of my guys “welcomed” a new pastor to our church by dousing him with water balloons–thrown from the church steeple. Ouch. Then, what seems like just a few years later, he was asked to serve as a deacon…alongside that same pastor. I’m absolutely certain that God has a sense of humor.

  2. Thank you, Krysten! As a Mom of 9 & 8 year old girls plus a 5 year old boy, I really needed to hear your words of encouragement! one question- do the boys ever start liking and wearing underwear!? I can’t seem to convince my 5 yr old son that underwear is good.

    • Jessica ~
      I have two boys. One has worn underwear since he was potty trained. Won’t go without them. Ever. My other boy who is almost 12 prefers to be free! Always has! He is my sensory kid. Things like textures and tags bug him. I just let him go no chonz! The only time we’ve made underwear mandatory is when he is playing sports. Also, as they get older, they become more aware of modesty. Your lil guy might wear underwear at some point or he might not. 😉

  3. Oh Kristen, you could not know how close these words hit to my heart this morning. I am in a season of trying. Every. Single. Day. With my 16 year old son. No drugs, no alcohol, so I know I’m blessed in many ways, but mercy! I am feelin’ it! Today is another day. To look at this time as you say above. To remember it’s all part of God’s plan and I do not have to sweat the “small” stuff, even when the small stuff seems overwhelming. Thank you.

    • You’re so right on: some days we are just “feelin’ it.” Yes and amen. May you soon get a good dose of less overwhelming days, Shelly. We all certainly need that. Sending love!

  4. Kristen,
    This was a delight to read, thank-you for starting my day off right.
    Have a blessed day all,

  5. Amen. Amen! God bless you for sharing this. I have 4 kids. 3 are adults 1 graduates from Highschool next year. I’ve gone back and forth with ” I didn’t do a good job” ” did I totally mess up my kids?” Etc. Praying, fasting that theyre saved and filled with the Holy Spirit that they’ll fulfill every purpose God put them here to do trusting God . .. thankyou so much for the encouragement sister.

  6. Kristen,
    This momma is looking looking to find the joy (not the sadness) in seeing my baby boy graduate HS next year! This is soooo right on time. my oldest son is a Junior that is about to be a senior and also plans to go into the Air Force! I look back on his life and see the kind of small child he was and i see how that plays into the kind of young man he is growing up to be. My oldest son, was always the kid that was the rule follower. he was the one who always wanted to do the right thing, always stood up straight, always “walked the straight and narrow” so to me it is very fitting that he wants to go into the Air national guard while a senior, then go to college while in AFROTC and enlist in the Air Force. His dream is to fly F-18’s! and i believe he can do it! Signing those Air National Guard papers while he is a Senior in HS… both makes me proud and scared… i fight back the tears of how proud of him i am as well as a little bit of fear. i put him in God’s hands and know that HE has a plan for him and will walk with him!

    My youngest son, he is the one that is more of a Maverick (pun and reference to top gun and fighter jets intended), and i can see him going for that art degree…he IS his own special personality and i love his sweetness and his spontaneity! He has his interests and i work to nurture those as well and cant wait to see what God does with him in his life!

    i can identify with the funny stories with my boys… as i have them for both! And my boys both love to hear them! they love the “when you were little” stories as well!

    Thanks for your sweet post, as it was very timely for me! i loved it! 🙂

    Dena 🙂

    • Solidarity, Dena! #AirForceMoms And I also love being mama to kids with wildly different personalities. It’s wonderful to witness all the ways God moves through their individual selves.

      Thanks for sharing here, Dena, and sending love to you!

      • Yes, Kristen, I agree! Solidarity for sure! My son is would either love to go to Embry-Riddle or to the Air Force Academy… but he is afraid he will not even be looked at because it is so competitive! I think he could totally get in, as he is a good kid!

        Also i wanted to let you know i found your blog and I subscribed! I love reading it already! 🙂 You have a new blog follower, for sure! 🙂

        thanks so much for your reply, Sending hugs and a big thank you your way! 🙂


  7. First, I’m totally going to try that chicken recipe you linked to because I could use some magic at my dinner table. 🙂 Second, I love the way you said this: ” I will honor God’s good work in them, careful not to take too much credit for their accomplishments or too much blame for their shortcomings.” Yes! Thank you, Kristen!

  8. The line about making Mother Teresa cuss is humorous. If people say they haven’t experienced this, are they truthful? I’ve seen plenty of kids and know how they can be. But you know I heard the older you get that you get closer to you personality. There was mean old lady at a nursing home I visited, so she must have always been mean. Trying hard to imitate Christ, well, we;ve got a way to but we are on track.

  9. Hi Kristen
    Thank you for sharing such a sweet story.
    I’m right in the middle of the ‘ unfolding ‘ as my son is 13.
    The years have flown by too fast. I want those toddler years back but then I watch some days as this little person is truly like a baby bird breaking out of his shell on his way to being that person he will grow up to be. Amazing. My heart bursts with such joy at what the future will hold for him.
    I thank God every day for this gift.

    God bless and thanks

  10. Kristen,

    Thanks for sharing this. I know it encouraged many women. Raising children in today’s world is hard. Add raising good Godly children & it’s almost impossible. There is so much “worldly junk” out there tantalizing our children. Moms must pray hard & let God have His way with the children. He knows best. Unfold your hands let Him have them.

    Blessings 🙂