Editor's Note: On the weekends during the month of September, we'll be featuring excerpts from Barbara Canale's new daily devotional for parents of teens, Hope and a Whole Lotta Prayer. In the introduction, the author describes this books as "a vitamin to boost the soul." Enjoy these reflections on how parents of teens can survive--and thrive--during those turbulent years, by turning to God in the troubled and joyful times. --Barb

hope and a whole lotta prayer

Intimate Relationship with God

Even all the hairs of your head are counted (Matthew 10:30).

My daughters hated having their hair brushed. Their friends would brush each other’s hair, but my girls didn’t want any part of it. Recently, one daughter got head lice and needed meticulous combing for several weeks to pick out the myriad nits attached to her hair. By the time we eradicated the lice, I spent so much time examining each hair on her head that I came to know her on a more intimate level. This experience bonded us in a way we weren’t expecting. She had to stop working, offering us more time alone; friends and family avoided our home until we were lice-free. The louse episode had benefits that we both embraced and appreciated. I thought of Matthew’s words, how God knows each hair on our head, and I gained a better appreciation for it.

Have you had an untimely incident occur that had the potential to take down your entire family, but instead you found the silver lining? It isn’t easy to do, especially with a head full of bloodsucking parasites! However, one positive is that you have an opportunity to get to know your teen better, maybe on a level you didn’t expect. If something unfortunate strikes, put it into perspective and stay grounded.


God seeks a closer, more intimate relationship with us, too. In order to do that, we have to step away with the Lord and spend quality time getting to know “each hair on his head,” too!


Dear Heavenly Father,

Help me to establish a more intimate relationship with you. I want to rejoice in the splendor that I will find in your gracious mercy and love. You alone are my God and Savior; you are all I want and need. Amen.


From Hope and a Whole Lotta Prayer: Daily Devotions for Parents of Teenagers. Copyright Liguori Publications, 2015. Used with permission. Available at Liguori.org.

About the author:

Courtesy of Parker Stone Photography. All rights reserved. Courtesy of Parker Stone Photography. All rights reserved.

Barbara Canale’s writing career began after she adopted her two daughters, now young adults, from Romania. She writes for the Catholic Sun in Syracuse, NY and has contributed to eleven Chicken Soup for the Soul books. Her devotional books include the latest Hope and a Whole Lotta Prayer (2015) for parents of teenagers, the award-winning Prayers, Papers, and Play (2013) for college students, and To Have and to Hold (2014) for married couples.