She’s three years old. I’m over fifty. The gaps in our knowledge and understanding are enormous. She is insatiably curious, like the elephant’s child. I love to teach. We are a great pair.
And so naturally, I learn something from her every day.
1. Slow down: Three-year-olds can move like lightning when they want to…but usually they’d prefer to take their time. I match my steps to hers, so that she can keep up. I stop whatever I’m doing to see what she’s made. I put my agenda aside when she is hurt. It is an exercise in condescension…I stoop to her level, to meet her needs. And I think about God stooping to earth, meeting us where we are, taking time to listen and to care.
Posted in Christian, Faith, family, Meditations
Tagged Ask for help, children, God the Father, grandchildren, learning from children, Share, Slow down, Wonder
This post is adapted from one I originally wrote over at Winnowing a few years ago. As I’ve begun to practice lectio divina again recently…and since I have a three-year-old at home who loves to hear or see stories over and over and over again…I decided that this piece might be appropriate for today. If you read to the end, you’ll also see a tie-in to my Wednesday post on using sacred music for spiritual growth.
In order to meditate on a verse, one reads it slowly, several times, with pauses in between. This is the ancient practice of lectio divina (sacred reading). In order to memorize, one does much the same thing, though sometimes there is less emphasis on really getting at the meat of the meaning, and more on just learning the words. This will ring especially true to anyone who has ever crammed for a test…and then promptly forgotten every fact in the instant of handing the completed exam back to the teacher.
The invalid lay on his bedroll, looking at the pool where–allegedly–one could receive healing. His eyes were blank–not thoughtful, certainly not hopeful. He stared at a familiar scene, indifferently. Thirty-eight years of this view had bred a leaden acceptance.
This was home. Nothing would ever change. His family had dumped him here–they didn’t stick around to make sure he could get into the pool when it was stirred up. He couldn’t move himself quickly enough, and it had been years since he’d even tried.
Then a voice asked, “Do you want to get well?”
A new believer loves the Lord and sees how much her life has improved since she dedicated her life to Him. But still—there is the old tidal pull to addiction, and she is slipping further and further out to sea again. Is there a force great enough to tow her back to shore?
A Christian couple, with children, is separating–perhaps forever. No biblical grounds. The issues are complicated, but infidelity is not one of them. Can they find the selflessness and humility needed to move forward together?
A loved one is mentally ill, but it is not a disorder which visibly impairs his ability to function. Mostly it damages his relationships, including one with his own child. Will he ever see that he has a problem? Will he want to get help if he does admit the need?
Three real-life situations. Three seemingly-insurmountable obstacles. And yet hope is there, in the form of two little words: “But God…”
Today, with one eye on the clock which has robbed me of a precious hour, I am sharing a thought-provoking devotional post from 843 Acres, on viewing our lives as a work of art “in progress”…
So far from demanding of the Lord, “What are You making?” (see Isaiah 45:9), we can choose to submit ourselves to the brush, to the wheel…and wait. Such receptivity requires contentment and trust, two excellent character traits to cultivate during this season.
Here is the devotional–the emphasis is mine.