Childhood and Change


I am selfish in this. I long to capture every second I can with my children.

I’ve always been conscientious, so the sagely voices that told me to treasure every moment, I believed and still believe. “Blink and they graduate,” the gray-haired women whisper.

I plant kiss after kiss on my boys’ soft curls. I squeeze them till they wriggle from my grasp. I snuggle them long past the moment I feel their bodies go limp, dead weight in my arms. I often think this time with them is too short.

Why do I dread them growing up?

I think it reminds me of my own mortality. I too am aging just as quickly as they sprout ankles beneath jean hems. I grow deeper brow wrinkles and new laugh lines as quickly as the number climbs on their shoe size.

I hug them as if to stunt their growth and pinch their cheeks just to enjoy how the pudginess bounces back to perfect roundness.

I heard the Chinese once wrapped girls’ feet in an effort to keep them smaller, more feminine. Like those little feet, I would bind my boys up from nose to knees if I thought it would keep them from springing up into adolescence.

But it won’t work, nor keep me physically fit and young. I really want to stop change, to send it a cease-and-desist order.

God’s purposes change. He incites growth in each of us be it physical, mental or spiritual. Why is it that we long to stand motionless, unaffected by the shifting?

Change shatters our comfortable habits like a wrecking ball waylays a decrepit skyscraper.

The sooner we can unclench our fists and come to God with open hands, the less pain we will endure. The Unchanging One demands total surrender. When we acquiesce, we grow more into Him and begin to see more as He does.

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