Running errands is often times no fun. Unless you’re running errands with Laynie. After having a surprise lunch with daddy today, I decided we needed to stop by the bank. And of course, in the middle of speaking with the bank teller, Laynie announces to God and everybody within ear shot, that she has to “go pee AND poop.” Yes, everyone, that’s my darling little lady there. Never a dull moment with this one.
Funny conversations with Laynie seem to always take place in the bathroom. I have her on video singing “You are my Sunshine” while pooping. Of course that means every other word was grunted (somewhat close to pitch actually). But today’s “dirty talk” began when she pointed to the little silver box (ladies, you know the one) and told me with such confidence, “Mommy this is where the coupons go.”
My daughter is 3 and a half. And let me just clarify, she’s 3 and a half going on 21. She knows the pledge, she’s memorized the Lord’s prayer, she can spell and write her full name, & many of her stories begin with, “Mommy, when I was a baby I used to….” She knows so much! And like every parent, I think she’s the smartest kid I know. In fact sometimes she’s so smart, I forget she’s just a child.
Last night’s conversation was one of the hardest conversations of my life. Given our son’s condition, we prayed and felt led to tell our daughter what was going on. How do you tell a child so young that her brother will die? How can a child so small possibly come close to understanding what that really means?
As I was rocking Gideon, the opportunity arose, and my husband and I went with it. We told her that Bubba has a genetic disorder called Zellwegers. We told her that most people grow really old before they die and go to Heaven. But because of this genetic disorder, Bubba would be very young when he goes home to Heaven to meet Jesus. We paused to see how much of this she was processing and she immediately replied, “But I’m not ready for him to go to Heaven.”
We are never ready for death are we? It seems like the people we love the most are always the ones gone too soon. For every family, death is sad: and let’s be honest, it’s down right hard and unfair. But for those who know Jesus, there is a hope in death because we know it is not the end.
As we finished that conversation, I asked Laynie if she wanted to stay and pray with us. And without hesitation, she took my hand and her fathers hand; and with Gideon still in my arms she began to pray, “Our Father who art in Heaven, hallowed be thy name, thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom and the power, and the glory forever. Amen”
Did you hear that? Thy will be done… She doesn’t know it yet, but she’s already praying for God’s will. My heart is filled with joy even in the midst of my sorrow. She’s a daily reminder of the woman I want to be. I want her to know without a doubt that God is still good. That our world can come crashing down around us, and yet we can still say Praise Jesus, for He is good! I’m sure we will be having many more conversations with Laynie. It’s my prayer that every single one of them points her in the direction of the cross.
I’m hoping you’ll join me in talking with your kids, not just about the hard stuff, but about life and Christ. Let’s live everyday as if this is the last time we have to tell them about Jesus. It’s easier than you think. But be cautioned, they’re GREAT at spotting our hypocrisy. Let’s also practice what we preach.
Blessings to all.