How to Be the “New Kid” Well
Hey Camp Families,
Each of us will be the “new person” at some point in life. Debbi is a seasoned mom of four who has helped her kids adjust to being the “new kid” through several Air Force moves across the country as well as internationally. You’ll be glad you listen in!
Deuteronomy 31:8. The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you. He will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.
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Hello Camp Family, My name is Debbi Trosper and I’m a camp mom, summer staff mom, and until last summer before the Air Force moved us to Utah, I served as the assistant in the T Bar M Finance and Admin Office. Sending our kids into a new setting, being the “new person” can be intimidating and scary. Will they be liked? Will they make friends? What if they don’t know what to do? Have I given them everything they need? These are just a few questions that can swirl in our minds.
How can we help our kids do a good job being the “new person”? What do they need to do that well?
As a military family, our kids (and myself) have had to be the “new kid” more times than I can count. We want to protect them from discomfort, but we need to remember there are invaluable experiences waiting ahead for them. While I can’t say my kids always loved being the “new kid”, the friendships they have made, the experiences they have had and the resiliency they have forged, have been full of such blessing.
Here are three truths from Deuteronomy 31:8 we can remind our children as they approach new situations and settings to help them do a good job being the new person.
- You are never alone. “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” We never walk into a new setting where He isn’t there with us. Nothing is unknown or new to God. We can take comfort, that in our discomfort, He is right there with us.
- Do not be afraid. Remind your child that they do not need to be fearful. The opposite of fear is confidence. Provide your child with as much information about the new setting as possible and assure them you would not send them into a dangerous place. Remind them who they are in Christ, Who they ultimately belong to and that they can walk into this new situation in confidence. Remind them that their confidence comes from the Lord. Psalm 71:5 says, “For you have been my hope, Sovereign Lord, my confidence since my youth.” Remind your child of the gifts and character that are theirs they can bring into this new place and the people they will encounter.
- Do not be discouraged. Remind your child things may not go exactly as they expect or are used to, but they don’t need to be discouraged. The opposite of discouraged is full of courage. Being full of courage (or courageous) means continuing to persevere when things are hard. Christ will help them do just that. Ephesians 4:13 says “I can do all this through him who gives me strength.” As their parent, be their biggest cheerleader.
Pushing through the discomfort of being the “new kid” is never easy, but God has so many people and places out there for your child (and you) to experience. Open communication and directing them to the truths from God’s Word will set them up for success.
- What new place or situation are you nervous about?
- What makes you most uncomfortable as you think about that place or situation?
- Ask your parents to tell you about a time where they were the “new kid”.
- Can you think about a character you have read about in the Bible that had to be in a new situation? How did God provide?