I started thinking about all the little kindergartens I know in the neighborhood. There’s E, C, L and H. Precious little ones; brave enough, even excited to leave home every day to attend school, but anxious to return to their mother’s arms at the end of the day. They come home with backpacks full of finger paintings, traced letters and self-portraits made out of noodles. I know their mothers; mothers like me who live to have another day with our angels; to play, work, create and love. To be kissed and kiss. To be hugged and hug. To teach and be taught. Because the companionship of a child is warm and nurturing and worth every sacrifice.
We teach our children to trust, to go have adventures, to learn. “We’ll be waiting,” we remind them and we may be preoccupied and busy while they’re gone, but in the back of our minds we’re just waiting for them to run through that door again. As parents, we take risks with our children. A small part of our heart escapes when we let them go, but then they return and we are both stronger.
The part I don’t understand is has it ever been safe? This world is not safe, but we trust that today it will be safe enough to let our child out and try his or her wings. It’s never perfect, but most days are good enough. We have scrapped knees, crocodile tears and whispered prayers before bed, thanking God for all our blessings because we know the only way another day has come and gone is because of His blessing.
I heard a song by singer and songwriter Stephen Curtis Chapman called A Long Way Home. “We are just pilgrims passing through,” he says, referring to this life.
This life of trials, pain, hurts, illness and death.
So, what is it? And why? If God himself would allow His son to suffer, be mocked, tortured and die on the cross, what does that teach me about death? That God knew this life was temporary? That this life has a purpose even with death? That we will live again? If Christ came to live and die, and we come to live and die, what is our purpose? Here’s what I think it is.
To bear one another’s burdens.
To stretch our selves.
Because this is our only chance on earth. So many around us suffer and hurt. There are those hungry, homeless, widows, orphans and what we do for them is how God sees us. Our actions of love are how we grow closer to Him; how we burn bright. The times we hurt most are when we need Him most. It isn't fair, but God never promised life would be fair. If He would let His son come to earth to love, then so should it be ours to love.
When life is dark and lonely, thank heavens for the sticky smiles and wide eyes of our children. They are a piece of heaven and a reminder that love conquers all. They are our fairy tales and happily ever aftes. For those parents in
Connecticut who lost
their precious little reminders of heaven, I am so sorry. Our nation mourns. God lost His son because of wicked people’s
choices too, but God understands that in heaven love wins.