Monday night class at our church started off as classes for ministers in training. But, over time, it became an in depth studying of God’s word and our personal lives. This group varies in age, title, interests, etc… But, we all share one thing in common. A thirst for more of God by any means necessary. We have become one another’s sounding board, confidantes, cheerleaders and accountability partners, promising to do our best with God’s help to leave none behind.
Last night’s classroom discussion was, “What makes you nervous?” Everyone rambled on about their fears and doubts and we all found that most of what causes our palms to sweat and lose a bit of courage are all one in the same.
My daughter (11) and nieces (14 and 17) have, over time, moved on from sitting at the outskirts of the classroom while their moms learned, to being the first in the room to ensure a good seat at the table.
On the drive home, my daughter started reliving what we had just talked about and the things that caused us nervousness. Then with a sudden change in direction, she said to me, “are you ever nervous you’ll miss something?” I said, “yea but what do you mean?” She answered, “that you’ll miss a sign from God.” I didn’t wreck the car, but the flood of emotions I felt at the mere questions could’ve caused me to. I was still intrigued, and told her, “yes all the time. I was gonna say that as one of my nervous things in class. That I am nervous and worry about whether I’m doing what God wants me to do.” I asked her to give me an example of what she meant. She thought for a minute then said, “like the one time we were driving and it was raining and we were talking about rainbows and what they meant. And then all of the sudden we saw one in the sky. But, what if I had missed it? What if I was sleeping or something and didn’t get to see the rainbow?” Before, I could bask in the amazement of her insightfulness, she pointed out that it was my turn. She wanted an example from me *gulp.* I thought for a minute and realized I wanted to be honest and real with her about it. I told her in my past relationships and last relationship I felt like I missed God and what He was trying to show me. She said, “well maybe you didn’t miss it. Maybe it came eventually.” (Yes, those were her exact words). As I was trying to keep my composure through her last revelation, she still probed for more details… *gulp* She rambled off questions….how? What made you think that there were signs? What are you looking for? So, I steadied myself and gave her some examples, then I told her, honestly and frankly, that I am looking for someone who knows God wants them to be with me, who loves her and loves me and takes good care of us. And as if God whispered in her ear, and had been doing so all along, my little one asked me (as if it were rhetorical), “Can you just be happy with the half of that?” Afraid to speak anymore, but still wanting to completely understand, I quietly said, “how?” She sighed and explained, “with just the ‘they love me and they love you and take good care of us’ part?” Thinking I knew what she meant, I said, “ohhh so the next person that comes along as long as they love us and take good care of us that should be enough?” Careful not to leave any gray areas, she answered slowly and clearly, “you already have it.”
“WHERE?!” I whined. Secretly hoping this wasn’t going to turn into a conversation about her father and I being together. For the last time that night, she shut me up and quieted my thoughts. “Our family. They love you. They love me. And they take good care of us.” Sigh. “What I’m tryna say is, you’re looking for it in a man. But, you already have it.”
For some reason, I needed this brought to my attention. And it came from the one I brought into this world! Shame on me. Love is love. And it’s too precious to be taken for granted or to come with guidelines of where it should come from. God has sent me love every single day of my life, something not everyone can say, and I dismissed it. Not because I didn’t want it. I wanted it very much. I needed it. I even appreciated it…some. But, in my own, careless way, I was telling God it wasn’t enough. And He was asking, “Can you be happy with just the half of it? If you never get what you want, can you be happy with what I’ve given you?” For the first time, last night, I told God (and myself) YES! Yes, I can and I will. I am richly loved. By this wonderful family He has entwined me with and more importantly, I am loved by Him. So are you.