leif, our little guy, is now at the stage andy kindly refers to as “suicide watch”. if you’ve ever had any contact with any kind of one-year-old, you know. crab apples the size of marbles in his mouth or branch bark. he’s particularly fond of sticks. or bits of asphalt. or climbing up step ladders before he walks. you know.
yesterday, as i sat perched behind leif on our basement stairs while he stood at the top gazing down determindedly (adventurously? maybe that was the glint in his eye. . . .), i got to thinking about God. (i’ve always done some of my best thinking in stairwells.) here leif is, at the brink of impending danger, smiling down at me, with nary a care. super thrilled to be on this adventure of life, oozing with possibility & promise.
here i am, at the ready, positioning my whole self to block a tumble 12 steps to the scratchy carpet square & panneled wall at the bottom. he is virtually unaware of my plan to keep him in one piece, nor does he care. he just knows i’m there with him. that’s all he needs. what if i took the leify perspective? here i am, life. watch me!! today is the day; let it fly. i’m on a roll; i can, in fact, do anything. watch! WATCH!!
& about God, He’s close, in an “of course” kind of way. keeping me company, hanging out, cheering me on, proud of the things i’m doing that He created me to do. that’s how i feel about leify, & i’m a flawed, whacked-out, stumbling parent. how much more encouraging & energetic about me is God, do you suppose?
in the bible God calls Himself, “Emmanuel,” which means “God with us.” He doesn’t call Himself “Corrector,” or “Stern Guardian,” or even “Holy Administrator.” He also refers to Himself more than anything as “Father”. as a parent to us. now, if you can cull out all the beefs (beeves?) you may have with your own folks, & fill the gap with all your good & right intentions plus infinity, you get a tiny glimpse of how God feels about you.
i’m beginning to see me & Him differently now. as i stair climb with leif, or sit in the sandbox with kieran making soup, as i read with thalia all curled up against me, or listen & listen to javin’s plans for his harry potter costume, i get God a little bit better, i think.
sure, part of my job is to keep leif alive & the bugs out of his mouth, to keep the SS Lunch & Laundry afloat around here, to chime in when the bickering reaches “physical harm level”. but really, i just enjoy my little boy, my kiddos. most of my being with him & them is JUST BECAUSE I WANT TO. i believe God is the same way. not that He’ll never correct me (duh, i’d hope not to be left alone) or administer some loving discipline (probably more gentle than i do), but i believe the biggest part of who God is is a Father just wanting to hang out with His kids. that’s sure how i view leify, the lot of them, anyway.