For the past two days I’ve been at home (instead of at work) with Ginny, who has had a nasty, junky cough, and a fever. We’ve done pretty good so far this fall–she’s not been home and stuck to the nebulizer until now. So, we’re hanging out at home. I’ve been doing what work I can from home, and taking advantage of being home to get some stuff done around the house. Ginny was particularly happy about the housework part of the day. She even worked it into her blessing at dinner last night: “Dear Lord, thank you for mommy, daddy, Sydney, and Will. And thank you for cleaning up.” For those that don’t know her well, Ginny thrives on neatness and order and is a bit OCD. She’s the most organized in our house (a heavy burden for a girl that just turned 3.) So it was not really a surprise to me that she was thanking the Lord for a clean living room. (Just this VERY moment I heard the words, “I love putting things up!” come out of her mouth. And NO you can’t have her–she’s all ours!)
It was Monday AND a sick day and she spent the day in her jammies. Cause you can do that when you are sick. But come 2pm it was time to go collect her brother and sister from school. I stuck my head in her room and did something I HATE to do–woke her up. Cause she’s grumpy sometimes when she just wakes up. But she was sick and in jammies and we were just going to drive through a couple of carpool lines, so I saw no reason for her to change into clothes, or put on shoes, for that matter.
But in Virginia World there are rules and she walked out the door and her socked feet must have screamed to her, “you aren’t wearing shoes!” because she stopped dead in her tracks and screeched that she needed shoes. I’d already grabbed my ID, keys, and Diet Mt. Dew, and I had no intention of going back for shoes. SHE DIDN’T NEED THEM. I knew she was going straight to the van and not getting back out until we came home. I knew, and I told her, that I was going to carry her to the van. But she thought she knew better. She questioned my judgement and my motives for wanting her to go out without her shoes. She fussed a bit as I picked her up, sock feet and all and proceeded to buckle her in to her car seat.
She finally accepted the fact that she was on her way without her shoes and the world hadn’t ended.
Even as this was going on I was thinking about how we are this way with God. One of the main ways I see my own relationship with God is through the lens of my relationship with my own children. I began to think of the times that God has called me to “walk outside with my socks on.” He calls me somewhere unknown, for reasons known only to Him, to do something that calls me out of my comfort zone. Ginny only knows that I usually say that she needs shoes on to go play. But sometimes God’s way is strange to us, and seems so odd that we balk. We say that we need the shoes, that we aren’t going unless we do it the normal way. Even when God says that it’s ok, and that He will carry us.
Back to the van. As we were driving away and I was contemplating how she had finally come to see that her lack of shoes wasn’t the end of the world as we know it, she showed me yet again how trust is an ongoing process. When we were about half a mile away from our house she said, “Momma, are you sure it’s ok that I don’t have shoes on?”
How we must make Him shake His head.