What My 13yo Wants You to Know About Life

I don’t know how to mama an adolescent. The thought of it kind of makes my stomach hurt. Really bad. Because it’s not the same.

It’s not the same as when they stuck Honey Smacks up their noses or insulted slow grandmas in grocery stores.


Those were the days.

Now I mom a young lady who is witty, saucy (Sarcasm is one of our family values), and brilliant. My girl is brave and real. I am watching her ford the headwaters of anxiety, stress, responsibility, hormones, decision-making, independence, and I am ever trying to determine where my mom sphere ends and her space to flourish begins.

That property line is pretty fluid at this time, but I am trying my best to be mindful of it.

To respect it.

Even when that means I sit in my recliner in the dark of morning, head bowed, tears fresh, and pray. While I sit on my hands, purse my lips to detain my words, and allow her to learn difficult lessons. Only because I believe that’s part of my job in preparing her to walk in the fullness of all that God intends for Carson Lane Cawthon to be.

And she’s doing it beautifully.

So while I am thick in another writing project (HINT), my girl’s gonna take the helm here…

Be still.

The thing about still is….I don’t especially like it. I’m a mover. I get bored easily. I like to be challenged. I’m a D personality. I’m driven. I’m somewhat of a perfectionist. Still is not my jam. Nor is it how my generation operates.

In our world today, we don’t have to be “searched out.” No one is looking for us in the Yellow Pages. On any given day, my agenda can be found full of to-do’s and appointments written with an array of colorful pens. It is easier than ever for our lives to become “I was supposed to be there 10 minutes ago” and “If one more person gets between me and Starbucks, I may just lose it.”

The results are less than great.

Anxiety can take over and we might as well schedule worry into our Google calendars. This is not God’s best.

We are not pursuing our callings, using our gifts, and experiencing what God has created for us as well as He intended. The Bible has something to say about this.

Moses answered the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again. The Lord will fight for you; you need only be still.” Exodus 14:13-14

blue chair rest area

He says, “Be still and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” Psalm 46:10

These words ring true in my life through panic attacks, stress, and fear. I felt like I couldn’t trust God with my circumstances because of difficult times in the past. But, I learned when fighting my own battles, I always lost.

Even today the Lord presses us to show that we trust Him enough to let Him fight for us. Oddly, it takes faith to be still. And let God handle our storms. However, still does not always look like not moving. Sometimes still is a state of mind. Sometimes still is just taking a breath amid hectic circumstances and trusting that the Lord will deliver us from Egypt.

Dad in Intensive Care Unit. Breathe.

Moving to a new city. Breathe.

Starting a new school. Breathe.

Play response due. Breathe.

I haven’t always gotten it right, but I have experienced the power of this trust in small increments just enough to understand that it could change my life. Still is a radical form of trust that I want. And the world needs.

What would happen if we all found peace even when “the mountains fall into the heart of the sea” or when “nations are in uproar, kingdoms fall“?

What if we believed that “The Lord Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress”?

A steadfast Psalm 46 type of trust could start a movement in our world.

Just because we were still.

Guest post by Carson CawthonCarsonHeadshot

You may also enjoy reading Madness I Say and rewinding to a post about my Carson when she had just completed first grade, I Get a Kick Out of That Girl…

[Feature images: Barta IV and Tim Lenz]
The House That Regret Built
Hidden, but not healed


  1. Becky
    July 22, 2015 at 8:33 am

    What awesome words to read this morning, Carson. Thank you for helping me refocus as I face my mountains as well.

    • Carson Cawthon
      Carson CawthonReply
      July 22, 2015 at 2:30 pm

      Thank you for reading! It’s always great to keep in mind as we go through hard seasons that we aren’t handling it on our own.

  2. Martha Davis
    Martha DavisReply
    July 22, 2015 at 12:46 pm

    Carson, thanks for putting my day into perspective.

    • Carson Cawthon
      Carson CawthonReply
      July 22, 2015 at 2:34 pm

      You’re welcome, and thank you for the encouragement. It’s great to go into whatever challenges the day holds with this in mind.

  3. Grammie
    July 22, 2015 at 1:41 pm

    Girl, you are so awesome! Your writing on the blog was so well-written and so very true. For most people, including me, it is easier to do the impossible than it is to be still and let someone else be in control of our storms. Even when we know in our hearts that God is strong enough, brave enough, loving, patient, caring enough, and capable enough, we feel that we need to do something. In today’s world we are programmed to be assertive and in control, not be still. Thank you for your reminder that when we are so tried of fighting or running we need to stop and be still, breathe, and let God’s will be done. Love you to the moon and back. You nailed it – so very proud of you!

    • Carson Cawthon
      Carson CawthonReply
      July 22, 2015 at 2:43 pm

      Love you so much! Thank you for reading the post and encouraging so well! You are right when you say that our fast-paced culture encourages action, but we have the ability to stop it. Thank you for being an awesome part of my life!

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