No Show, Sincerity

Yesterday afternoon my youngest son (almost 20 years old!) took off on a hike in the hills behind our house.  He was gone for five hours – a bit stir crazy like the rest of us.  While telling my husband and I about his adventure and recalling the details of the terrain after he got back, he stopped as a thought obviously captured his attention.  Leaving for a second to retrieve a treasure he’d found, I wondered what he could have come home with.  He stood at our bedroom doorway with a handful of wilted wildflowers, sheepishly laughing and assuring me that they didn’t look like that when he’d picked them.  They were for me!  My almost 20 year old son picked wild flowers and brought them all the way home in his backpack from a five hour hike – for me!

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The day before that I had picked a dandelion from our back yard and given it to my middle son, Eli.  I told him he could put it in his hair (haha) like I used to do when my boys picked me dandelions and flowers in their younger years.  My youngest son, Kobe, had asked why they used to do that.  It sounded silly to him to recall being compelled to do so.  I told him that little boys love their moms and that that’s why they wanted to pick flowers for them.  Fast forward a day later and that same 20 year old is now compelled to pick flowers for his mom.  No need to try to explain how deeply into my heart the gesture settled, besides, I don’t know if I could do it justice.

Things like this always make me think about my relationship with God, as His daughter.  When I think of how moved I was by my son’s gift to me in all its imperfect, heartfelt, sincere glory, I wonder how I can please my Father in Heaven the same way.  There was no impressive show in my son’s gift.  There was nobody watching as he stooped low to gather blessings for his mom.  That makes it so much more beautiful.  Nothing store bought could ever have moved me as this did.

“…The LORD doesn’t see things the way you see them.  People judge by outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.”   I Samuel 16:7

Somebody’s Daughter

A young girl wakes to a predawn morning.  Within minutes she’s warming herself by the farmhouse’s fireplace.  Today promises to be an ordinary day, spent for the most part on chores and schoolwork.  If she works diligently she’ll have time to read down by the creek under her favorite old oak tree.  Life is good for her.  At the age of eight, nothing about the simplicity of her life causes her to realize it as extraordinary, but she is grateful for her mom and dad and all of God’s creation, always giving thanks as her parents have taught her.

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Contentment leads her life, with curiosity following closely behind.  She loves to imagine what it’s like in Heaven.  Her favorite songs are the old hymns that celebrate the saints’ glorious entry into their celestial home; the powerful lyrics contributing to her imagination.  In all her excitement and wonder about the things of God and Heaven, there’s a question that occupies her thoughts, one she presents to God this day.  Unable to stop thinking about the fate of people who don’t know Jesus, earnestly wanting them to make it to Heaven; she asks Him, “Who will tell them?”

Years and years pass by, and not a single one of them is spent wondering what the answer to her question is.  You see, God answered her that day, at the tender age of eight, right there in the shade of that old tree.  I will send you.  I will be yours and you will be Mine.  You will tell many of my love and lead them to Me.  Someday, when it’s time for you to leave this earth and go to Heaven, you’ll know that you were made for this.

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She devotes her entire life to spreading the gospel as a missionary soon after reaching adulthood, and leaves behind her dear mother and father.  God provides for her a different kind of family than what is common to us.  Her family members are the orphans she cares for, the poor she feeds, the sick she prays for and ministers to, and the brothers and sisters in Christ who serve along-side her.  Never does she believe herself to be lacking.  Her vow is remembered and lived.

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“Lord, is this the day I’ll go home to be with You?”  Her question is barely a whisper.  Knowing that she is soon Heaven-bound, she is compelled to consider the entirety of her many years on this earth.  The faces of her parents and the many faces of the loved ones of her life’s work run through her memories.  Oh, that she could be back together with them one more time to tell them she loved them.  But she is not alone.  God, her Heavenly Father, who has never left her side for a single moment is there with her now in that hospital room.  Oh, the joy and gratitude for this beautiful life that God has given to her is overwhelming in this space in time.  In a short while she will spend all of eternity worshipping the God of her life.  But first, He has one more assignment – for her to tell those outside her door…

Somebody’s Daughter

Lying alone in her hospital bed
She opens her eyes to an empty room
She’s come to the end of her journey
It’s time to finally rest

Where have the years gone?  She wonders as she
Prepares herself to leave this world behind
A tender tear rolls gently down
Her worn and fragile face

She hears the whispers from outsider her door
They say, “She has no family to leave behind”
“It is so sad for her” they say
“She has no one at all”

She is somebody’s daughter
She was somebody’s little girl
She had a mother and father who brought her into this world
Was she loved all of her days?
Was there anyone on her side?
Did she have dreams like the rest of us and did any of them ever come true?
She’s all alone in her hospital bed
But she’s somebody’s daughter

She prays, “Lord, take my hand as You always have done
Use me once more before I go
Give me the strength for this final task
And let Your glory shine”

Help them to see Your life in me
Help them to see that I am free
Give me the words to help them know
That I’ve never been alone

That I am Somebody’s daughter
I am Somebody’s little girl
I have a heavenly Father who gave me life in this world
I was loved all of my days
He was always by my side
He gave me dreams that He helped to come true, He was my joy in this life
I’m not alone in this hospital bed

I am Somebody’s daughter