Deadlines And Details

"I love to think about God."

A simple statement by a simple child. Children keep things simple (Matthew 11:25). Life has yet to confound or confuse them with deadlines and details. Oh, but to be a child again. No hurries, no worries. Inquisitive and curious about everything from earth worms to wrinkled hands. The "whys" and "how come" questions seem unending. A weary mother wonders if they ever will. Sure enough, they do. And when they do, she wonders where the time went.

She looks down one day and sees the wrinkled hands her children wondered about. The earth worms that stirred awe in them then, bore them now. Vacation bible school is a misty memory. Swing sets and park slides suddenly slip into nostalgia. Right before her eyes, just a blink, and little lives change. Paychecks, peer pressure, and drug driven parties are now their problems and priorities. The children that knew not a worry in the world are at this instant in the middle of it. She prays the world doesn't get the best of her oldest or give its worst to her youngest. Oh, but to have the questions asked again.

Hindsight allows her to see that her weary, worried, and hurried ways simply weren't worth it. It was optional. It was a choice. And she sees that because it was, they must have been watching. Perhaps it was the harsh tone or the infrequent hugs following so many frustrating days at work. Why? How come? She is pained by the questions. Their questions are hers. What they must have felt, she feels. Her empty nest isn't a syndrome some self-help book can better. Alone she sits, loathing self-centeredness. Every ill-spoken word and the words that should have been beg for answers. It has finally hit home and her heart is breaking because they no longer are.

The phone rings and she lets it go unanswered. Moments later it rings again and cautiously she decides to answer. Her prayer is answered. The world hasn't won. Her son's voice has gotten deeper and his first love has too.

"Mom?" he utters with questioning inflection.

She stills her spirit to prepare to answer.

"I still love to think about God."

A simple statement by still your child.

Listen to your children. Why? How come? Very simply. Weary, worried, and hurried ways simply aren't worth it. By the way, a lot of sage is in the tender mercies of mouths of mere babes.

Copyright 2006 Brian Jett