Children’s children are a crown to the aged.
I remember my grandmother kneading dough, green beans simmering on the stove nearby. I’d stand on the stepstool so I could watch her hands lovingly shape the dough into biscuits. We’d talk about little girl things—butterflies and pigtails and the pony I wanted. Now, standing in my kitchen, my hands move the dough of the bread I’m making, and I’m overcome with wishing I’d known then what a gift it was to watch her hands—what a gift it was to be her granddaughter.
I looked out the window, my head swimming with such poignant memories that it took a moment for me to feel God’s hand on my shoulder.
“I miss her,” I said. “There are so many things I wish I’d asked her. But the time went by so quickly. I was a little girl, then a busy wife and mother, and then she was gone.”
“She loved you,” God said tenderly.
“I loved her, too. Tell her when I see her again that I’ll sit down with her and get to know her better. Will you do that for me, please?” I asked.
“She already knows,” God replied. He hugged me, and I got back to kneading my bread, looking out on another gray morning, this one filled with longing and gratitude.
Children’s children are a crown to the elderly.
Helping my eldest son with his two children proved to be taxing. Exhausted as I climbed the stairs to help with the baby, I prayed, “God please help me this morning. Give me the strength I need to be of service.”
“I’m on it,” God said as He nudged the sun up over the horizon.
“Thank you. I’m not a spring chicken anymore.”
“I know. But you can still dance,” God said.
“I don’t want to dance. I want to sit here on the couch and hope that the baby isn’t too fussy,” I explained.
“Oh, but you really do want to dance,” God answered, His eyes twinkling.
“What are you up to, God?” I asked.
“Come on, dance with me,” God said with a smile, and pulled me off the couch and into the room.
We danced in the early light, God twirling me by the hand. When He dipped me, my heart did a little cartwheel.
“There now, ready to take care of the baby?” He asked when we were done.
I laughed. “More than ready. Dancing with you is good medicine,” I replied.
“You can dance with me any time, Sparrow,” He said tenderly. “I always know the steps to lighten your heart.” Just then my son came into the den and put my precious grandson in my arms.
“Yes, you do God,” I whispered. I looked into the baby’s eyes and saw God’s love shining up at me.
“For since there is jealousy and quarreling among you, are you not worldly?”
~1 Corinthians 3:3
I was looking forward to joining my daughter to hear her boyfriend’s band play at a local venue. It would be “special time” with her that I sorely needed. I arrived late; the place packed with people. I snaked through the tables to find my daughter. I spotted her sitting with my ex-husband’s girlfriend! My heart sank into a momentary pool of jealousy; the flash of emotion so fast and uncontrollable, that I was startled by my reaction. I retreated to another table and sat down. I needed some time to allow my fear to settle down.
My fear tells me that I won’t get the love I deserve, or that there isn’t enough love to go around. One way or another, I will get cheated. None of that is ever true, I know. When I could think and feel rationally again, I got up and made my way to my daughter and embraced her. I embraced my ex-husband’s girlfriend, too. All of us had a fantastic night, and there was plenty of love to go around.
It’s so easy to slip into worldly worries. Our fragile egos are quickly triggered. When we put our focus and attention where they need to be, on God’s love, we can recover from our momentary emotional highjacking. We can move out of fear and into love. There is enough love to go around, always. It is only fear—False Evidence Appearing Real—that makes us think otherwise.