My girl - the beautiful Miss 7 - is, despite her sometimes brash and cheeky exterior, a very sensitive child who picks up on everything around her. She is at the age where emotions and feelings play a big part in how she acts and what she does. One such area is sleeping.
She frets and fears that she won't be able to sleep. Of late I've noticed it happening more and more. To alleviate this I read her to sleep. Despite my "smile that bursts" laugh and sometimes loud voice, God has given me a calming tone that lulls my precious child to sleep. That is, of course, when she's at home here with me.
Last night was no different. She's currently holidaying in another state with her father and his girlfriend. Last night, instead of painting as I would have liked to do, I sat on my couch reading Mary Poppins to my girl over the phone. After an hour she finally relaxed enough to say goodnight and attempt sleep.
But that's what I need, and want, to do for my child. Be there - and be 100% available - for her. Isn't that what being a parent is all about?
Yes, granted, children need to learn to relax themselves, think for themselves, and cope. However, as parents - and adults in general - we are to be there and be present in the moment with and for our children.
Jesus loves children - a lot. He said in Matthew 10:14 to "let the little children come to me". In Mark 10:14 He became angry at the disciples because they didn't want children near Him. (http://bit.ly/AjV6ij) I love, and appreciate, Jesus' example. And His truth that "the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these."
Bottom line - Jesus loves children and is present - in the moment - for them. That being said, so should we.
My girl has been through a lot of emotional turmoil over the last year and I don't see this year, or the subsequent years, being any different. I protect her as much as I can, but there are always outside influences that I can't shield her from. My role - my charge from God - is to guide her through life; to steward her to become a loving, caring and responsible adult. To be there, present and in the moment, when she needs me. To read stories, via phone, when she's in a strange place unable to sleep and missing me very much. When she's putting on a brave face to save suffering the ire and angst of another.
Children would be easier to handle if they did come with an off switch, but they don't. They come with needs, wants, emotions, feelings, fears, joys and a whole lot of love for those who brought them into the world. In my case, my girl also has a whole lot of love for her Heavenly Father whom she knows looks out for her even when others don't.
I love my girl and can't wait until she returns home. When she does I will show her that love by being there for her as I should be - as God destined me to be, even as a single mum.