God is really generous to me. He blesses me with so much! One of His most treasured gifts to me is that He lets me cross paths with women in different seasons of life. Some of these women have deeply enriched my life, sharpening me, encouraging me, blessing me by how they live their lives. One of these women is Allison Crawford.
Allison and I met while she was a student at UGA. Our lives had much in common - deep hunger for Jesus, fierce love for the Dawgs, and the profound blessing of each of us getting to do life with an an awesome fella! It has been my great privilege to not only call Allison a dear friend (practically a daughter!) but also to watch her and her husband, Andy, raise two adorable (and pretty brilliant!!) girls. Cannot overstate how sweet that is for me.
Allison shared some poignant insight with me and I asked her if I could share it on my blog. She said I could. So, allow me to introduce you to my friend, Allison. Be encouraged.
It happened on our drive back from church. While I was calculating how fast I could get lunch on the table and both kiddos down for naps, my three-year old causally asked from the backseat “Has Jesus made my heart clean yet momma?”
Y’all. It took everything within me not to wreck the car right then and there. Let me preface with the fact that said three-year old is incredibly smart (which I blame squarely on her daddy). She also talks ALL THE TIME (which is her SLP momma’s fault). That being said, I understand that sometimes things come out of her little mouth that she may not totally understand yet. But I knew that her question held eternal significance. I knew my response mattered. I would like to say that I had some brilliant, theologically-sound response ready for her. The truth is, I spit out something like “Well baby, that’s a really important thing that we should talk about with daddy and Pastor Bobby one day.”
Such important words coming from such a tiny person left me completely shocked. In Matthew 18, Jesus says “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.”
Sounds easy enough. Faith like a child. Got it.
My husband and I, like so many parents we know, try our best to point our little girl to Jesus every chance we get. In fact, I would guess that reading her Jesus Storybook Bible together has spoken to my heart even more than hers. Oftentimes though as adults, we miss seeing Jesus, don’t we? We see bills and schedules, yardwork and grocery shopping. We see all the things on our to-do lists and miss all the things on His. Our schedules are jam-packed to the point that we can’t slow down enough to see his obvious workings in our lives. Have no doubt, he is always there working. We just plain miss it most days.
But that smart little girl. She sees Jesus everywhere. On a sunny day when we take a walk and she thanks God for the breeze, when she feeds the ducks at the pond and tells me “God made them too! Just like us!”, or when we are practicing our letters and she shouts “the little T looks like a cross!”
As parents of little kiddos, sometimes we wonder if our kids are really getting it. Are they even listening to their nighttime bible story? Will they remember that Sunday school lesson? My husband and I teach 4th/5th grade Sunday school at our church, and even then I wonder…Are we making an impact? Are they bored? Is any of this sinking in? Are they really on Instagram right now instead of their bible app?
Isaiah 55:11 promises us that God’s word “will not return to Me empty, without accomplishing what I desire, and without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it.”
And Deuteronomy 6:6-7 makes our job as parents pretty clear: “These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.”
So whether you are discussing deep theological issues with your toddler over breakfast, planning your Sunday school lesson, or praying for your kiddos that just haven’t found their way yet, rest easy mommas. God is working in those little hearts. Even better, he is still working in yours and mine too.