I wrote this (or something like it) in a birthday card for two little boys (twins) that I love like they’re my own. The last line there comes from a blog I read back in May. It was a simple post that changed more than the way I sing a song to my daughter - I think it may have drastically altered the way I want to raise her. Most every night of her two years I’ve gone into her room before I went to bed to check on her. I take her milk cup out, put her in the middle of the bed, cover her back up, brush her little bit of hair from left to right, and I pray. I pray for her safety, that she’ll be protected – shielded, that she won’t know pain or loss or fear. I pray that where I fail, God will not.
I haven’t checked on her yet tonight, but I think when I do my prayer will be different. I think tonight I’ll pray that she’ll live – live big.
What you see, little eyes, see with care.
This is the line of the song the blog author suggest we use. The words are so similar to the original, (Oh, be careful, little eyes, what you see) that it may be easy to feel like they mean basically the same thing. I feel it’s safe to say the original author only meant to say that children should be careful what they are exposed to, input – output, right? While I agree with that, I also think there is suggestion there that we look away if something is ugly or broken or unholy. I don’t want my daughter to look away. I want her to see people. I want her to see them in their brokenness and need and desperation. I want her to see with compassion.
What you do, little hands, do with love.
I don’t ever want my daughter to be afraid to reach out. I want her to see need, be moved with compassion, and reach out in love. I want hers to be hands that heal – that hold up – that comfort.
Where you’re called, little feet, go with faith.
To do the things I hope she does, she has to be where God wants her to be. I hope he wants her to be next door to me, forever, but I’m convinced he has greater things planned for her. She’s beautiful, funny, sweet, engaging, smart, and she never stops going. She is going to do great things. Assuming she learns to listen when God calls and willing to go and do. I don’t want her to be careful where she goes. I want her to follow God with recklessness. I don’t want her testing the waters, I want her to leap with faith and go in head first.
I understand that she’s way too young to really process any of this. I just don’t want her to be afraid. I don’t want her to be so immersed in religious rules that she can’t see the miracle life is every day. I want her to be awed by God’s love and committed to his plan. I know where not supposed to be like the world, but I’m convinced we have to live in it. This may not be home, but it’s a pretty nice place to vacation and I'm in no hurry to leave.
When we were kids my youngest sister was terrified to get in the ocean. It looked like a water fall and she was afraid that if she got in it would suck her over the edge. The ocean is a big – dark – dangerous place, and we are not aquatic creatures. It makes sense to be afraid of what may happen if you lose yourself in it, but it ain’t much of a vacation if you don’t get in the water.