Friday, January 11, 2019

Trust Looks Like Twinkly Blue Eyes, a Big Smile & an Old, Dry, Dead Brown Leaf

What is “trust”? Well, dictionary(dot)com defines it as a; “firm belief in the reliability, truth, ability, or strength of someone or something.” I want my grandchildren to know they are able to trust me, but more importantly I want them to know they are absolutely able to trust God. Since my grandchildren are young (ten, seven and five years old), one way they learn they are able to trust God is by learning they are able to trust me.
So, what does “trusting me” look like to these three sweet rascal boys whom God has gifted to my life? Well, at times it looks like twinkly blue eyes, a big smile and an old, dry, dead brown leaf! Let me explain.
I live in my family homestead; a farmhouse on an acre in West Michigan which my grandparents built back in the 1920’s. My yard is filled with enormous maple trees and a very large old sycamore tree I remember from my childhood. Since I live in Michigan, these trees, while they provide a great amount of wonderful shade all summer, insure we have no shortage of leaves all over our yard in the Fall.
Today I'm remembering how one Sunday in January, two years ago, my grandsons were at my house and since it was warm — relatively speaking at 40 degrees — the boys went outside to play. Before long sweet Caleb (then five years old) came back inside with his blue eyes twinkling, a big smile on his face and an old, dry, dead brown leaf in his hand. He handed it to me before he ran back outside to play.
My husband and I were left talking and laughing about how Caleb loves to give me old, dry, dead brown leaves. My husband asked him a couple days earlier why he gives me the leaves he finds and he said; "Because my grandma loves them." He is absolutely convinced I love these old leaves. I do not, but I absolutely do love him with all my heart. So, when he gives me a “treasure” he found outside, I happily look into his twinkly blue eyes and tell him a very sincere, “Thank you”. Caleb sees my smile, hears my words and knows he is really seeing and hearing love which leaves him with a, “firm belief in the reliability” of his grandma’s love for him . . . and for these old leaves!
Caleb trusts my love for him, without fail. He knows he may bring these old, dry leaves to me and I will smile, thank him and he will feel loved. He trusts me because he has experienced my response over his lifetime. He remembers what I have said and done in the past when he has happily presented me with these “treasures” and he trusts I will respond in the same way each time he brings me another old, dry, dead brown leaf.
I want him to learn to trust God in the same way. I want him to experience what it is like to grow in his love for God and to walk closer and closer with Him. I want him to remember what God has done in his life in the past, so he will be able to trust how God will respond in the future. The more he experiences walking with God, the more he will remember what God says and does. The more he remembers what God says and does, the more he will trust Him. I want all my grandsons to have a “firm belief in the reliability” of God and His love for them. It matters for all of them to learn to trust God, so I am intentional in what I say and do to help them learn what it means to trust Him. I am intentional and aware about showing love; showing they are able to trust me and planning opportunities to talk together about how God shows His love and how we are absolutely able to trust Him.
So, for me, at times, trust looks like twinkly blue eyes, a big smile and an old, dry, dead brown leaf. So does the love of my grandson . . . and I have the old, dead, brown leaf to prove it!

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