A few nights ago, my family and I went out for ice cream with friends. We have a great place we like to visit. Next to the ice cream building there is a large sprawling lawn and picnic tables where our kids can play while we enjoy each other’s company.
My oldest daughter, Aletheia, has been going through a “horse” phase recently, as many young girls do. In her mind she loves to pretend that she’s riding her horse, Pinto, across meadows and mountain tops, just like Jim Craig, in The Man From Snowy River. (Side note: If you’ve never seen this movie or haven’t watched it recently, check it out. It’s a family favorite in my house.)
As we licked drippy ice cream and laughed with our friends, Aletheia enjoyed a ride with Pinto as she galloped back and forth, across the lawn.
Suddenly, my husband and I watched as Aletheia (and Pinto) took a nose dive into the grass. At this point she was rather far away, too far for us to see the look on her face. She got up, and, at first, it looked like she was going to go on running. Our friends laughed at her resilance, but as our girl got up and started running toward us, Chris and I knew she wasn’t okay.
I don’t know what it was exactly, that told me she was hurt. Perhaps it was the subtle slump in her shoulders, or the way she tucked her chin and bottom lip as she started to run our way.
Whatever it was isn’t there something about a parent and their child? Don’t we always have a way of knowing, of seeing what others can’t see?
In no time, Chris jumped up and ran to get her, to see if she was hurt, to find out what was wrong.
After inspecting her head to toe, he cradled her in his arms and carried her back to our table. She had a scrape on her knee, and although she was tired and probably a bit embarrassed, she was otherwise okay.
As we drove home, I thought about her fall and how Chris and I reacted to it. It’s a special thing, the way a parent knows their child and it filled my heart with love, not just for my own girls, but for the way I know our Savior knows us.
In the late 1990’s a Christian singing group called Scarecrow and TinMan wrote a song that I fell in love with. To this day it remains a favorite.
As Aletheia sucked her thumb and twirled her hair in our backseat, I thought of these words that describe our father/child relationship with God:
“I love you my son
And I want to tell you that you’re on my mind
The funny things you say and do, and I love, I love that you’re mine…
And I know your name and I weep when you hurt
And I cheer when you win
Because you are my son
I will come when you call
I will hear your prayers
And I will fight for my name
Because you are my son, you are my son” (Lyrics from You are My Son by Scarecrow and TinMen)
Sweet friends, we are children of the King! He calls us His own! He knows when we hurt. He sees what others can’t see. With love and grace, comfort and healing, He runs to us. He wipes away our tears and cradles us in His arms.
Whether it’s in times of nose dives and trouble, or times of treats and laughter, I am blessed to live as a daughter of the King.