God sometimes gives us unexpected gifts. Our gift has been a grandson who enlivens our lives and makes retirement very different than the one we anticipated. He is a special joy. And that's "Casey." In 2006 we fulfilled our dream of living in Italy for a year. It was every bit as wonderful as anticipated. This blog begins in 2005 as we prepared for that experience. Since then we have explored many places together. That's the "Travel." And finally, I am a person of opinions--spiritually, politically, on just about anything and that's the "Other Stuff." Welcome to my blog.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Buried in the Heart

What goes on in a child's heart? If we could only know!

What I do know is that it often runs deep into territory we adults don't realize has been breached. Children think harder, deeper, more profoundly than we imagine. Little minds travel to unknown places as they try to make sense of their worlds and the greater world around them.

Raising Casey brings this home to me more often than I would like. It is so much easier to believe that little minds go no further than toys and fun and good things because then we don't need to have answers for hard questions, confusions and sometimes pain.

But...raising a child is serious business and requires wisdom to answer or explore questions that spin around inside until they finally erupt with "why?" Questions for which we adults often have no easy answer or perhaps no answer at all. These are the times when we realize that all of our accumulated wisdom amounts to very little. These are the times when our hearts break and hurt because we just don't want our little one's heart to feel pain or endure confusion. We don't want to be helpless in providing hope and comfort.

It is at such times that God mysteriously gives us the words that we can't find. We hear ourselves making sense out of confusion and the words lead to an understanding of the question--an understanding of the question that has sifted through our child's mind many times before giving it voice. And with understanding the question and from where it comes and what it means, we begin to know what words are needed to bring solace and help and comfort.

Often those words speak to the question in simple, direct, child-right language that brings the understanding that is needed. Even more times they end up being as simple as "I don't know the answer to your question. I too puzzle over that. But what I do know is that God loves you so much that He will hold your hurts and comfort you. And I know that I love you with a love that only God could have given me for you and I will hold you close and keep you safe."

Sometimes this is all that is needed to restore a peace of heart and I know this because of the grand hug as little arms encircle me. And... finally---I love you, gramma.


Jill, Larry and Daniela. said...

Hi Jane
What a lovely post and so, so true. I'm bookmarking this one and adding it to my parenting toolkit. This will be a good reminder when I start questioning my own parenting abilities/wisdom. Thanks for sharing. Jill in Seattle

Jane said...

Hi Jill, how nice to hear from you! And thank you for finding my words something to remember. How are Larry Daniella? She must be pretty big by now. When do you get back to bella italia?

Anne in Oxfordshire said...

Such a great post. I look at my little grandsons and wonder what is going through their tiny little hearts..wonder what they are thinking!!

Jane said...

Thanks, Anne.