I was trying to send the kids up to bed the other night, telling them to finish up their cookies and put away the toys, when Amaleah called me over to see how beautiful it was outside, with the setting sun light shining through our small oak tree in such a way that it left the yard looking several tones of green and with pretty shadows playing off of the shed.
I wanted to tell her to stop delaying and to head up to bed, but instead I realized what a sweet moment it was, so I pulled up a stool and sat down next to her to admire the fleeting beauty together.
Because in a flash it struck me that my daughter was pointing beauty out to me, and this is something I’ve always done and continue to do with my children. I notice the sky and the patterns and the canvas that God is always painting and changing, we stop to see the birds and the sounds, we check out the caterpillars and the views of the city and the skyline.
I’m definitely not the most nature oriented person out there, by any stretch of the imagination, but the changing beauty of what’s around us has always struck me and I’ve always hoped that my children would someday notice things without me pointing it out.
And last night was such a sweet little gift of noticing–that my kids have their eyes open to what’s around them and can see and admire the beauty of the creation before us. And as I’ve pondered that moment, I’m encouraged.
I’m encouraged to think that the little things you do in front of your children every single day for twelve years and counting may actually become a part of who they are. They may actually become observers and noticers, not only of the beauty of creation but maybe even more than that.
We’ve been teaching our children the Gospel their whole entire life and sometimes you wonder when in the world it will settle in their own hearts in its own way. And every now and then there’s a window, a glimpse, a glimmer of what you’ve taught them that comes out in a question or an observation.
Every child grows and learns and spiritualizes at different stages. But I’m hopeful that the conversations we are always having, the pointing of our hearts and minds Godward, will one day become something they do on their own, much like the noticing of clouds in the sky and of light through the trees.
I don’t know, it’s something so little, and yet it means that much to a momma’s heart who often doesn’t see the results of her labor for years and years and years.
So here’s to all our efforts as moms, to be patient and know that eventually, Lord willing, the things we teach and live and say and do will become natural for our children.
(Of course our bad habits and words will become a part of our children too, but trust His sweet grace, and lay off the guilt that beats down at the end of the night. Trust His grace.)