Monday, February 8, 2016

Climbing Into God's Lap

The day I became a grandmother for the first time ushered me into a whole new realm!  Before that day I knew it would be fun to have some “grands” but I was unprepared for the not-so-subtle impact our children’s children would have on my heart.

We now have 3 beautiful grandsons but the first one, the one that ushered me into that “divine” place, was born on March 17, 2010.  (I love the irony of that day; his mama comes from a very Irish background and I love God’s perfect timing, bringing Henry into the world outside the womb, on St. Paddy’s Day.) 

This dear family lives way across the country so I camped on my phone that day. That call came and it catapulted me into the most ridiculous phase…you know, the phase where I carried pictures and would show them to anyone who would indulge me!

That same family produced Gus a few years later and, once again, I was totally captured.  My heart and emotions were as vulnerable as they were when their daddy was born….and when we adopted his brother 2 years earlier.

Thankfully we have a 3rd grandson, Jacob; he lives in our town so we get to love on him in person, more often.  In fact, recently Jacob wrapped his little arms around me and my heart just filled to the brim with a sweetness that can’t be described, though anyone with a close adult-child relationship will know exactly what that is.

Jacob is 4 ½ and was born with Down syndrome.  He is blond, blue-eyed and although he has few actual words, he communicates greatly through signing and loving.  He is all boy, complete with a love for all things dinosaurs, trucks and trains.  His activity level is high and somewhat impulsive, a product of the effects of Down syndrome AND the fact he is a 4 ½ year old boy.  He has strong likes and dislikes and loves on people like there is no tomorrow.

Jacob and daddy were over for dinner and we were enjoying some play time afterward in our living room.  In one corner of that room is a rocking chair….the very chair used to rock that doll baby to sleep when he was a very little guy. 

Jacob was busy moving about the room and suddenly, without warning, he headed in my direction (I was sitting in that rocking chair), climbed up on my lap and proceeded to give this grandmother some wonderful hugs, kisses and snuggles.  He had never done that, at least since he was very little.

His little head snuggled into my shoulder and we enjoyed a time of joyful grandmother/grandson intimacy.  I whispered in his ear, “Nana loves you.  Jesus loves you. Daddy loves you. Mommy loves you.  Papa loves you.”  I told him quietly that I remembered rocking him when he was a tiny baby and he made the sign for baby.  He stroked my face and puckered up, planting wet kisses on my face.  More snuggling.  What a moment and those moments stretched into 10-15 minutes.

Just maybe, this is what it would be like to crawl up into God’s lap.  Just as a grandmother is ALWAYS ready for her grandchildren, so God beckons us to HIM.  We can have that beautiful intimacy as His children; through prayer and Bible reading we can not only enter His throne room but climb up into his lap.  He, of course, is the sole occupant of the throne but His lap is always available.

When I am really hurting or struggling….or when I just need some comforting, I close my eyes and envision my heavenly “daddy”.  Sometimes I am just worn out and tired because of the cares and brokenness of this world and I need to hear God’s words of comfort and love.

In John 3:16 God tells us he loves us so much He sent His only Son, Jesus, to die for us so we can have an eternal relationship with Him.  Jesus tells us in Matthew 11:28, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”  I John 4:19 says, “We love because He first loved us.”  Nehemiah 9:17 reminds us that our God is gracious, compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love.”

Maybe, just maybe, God knew I needed some special loving the other day. Maybe, just maybe, He sent a little boy named Jacob, to remind me of my Father’s love. 

How is He demonstrating His love to you today?  Maybe it’s through a neighbor, a family member, a beloved pet; certainly His love is available 24/7 through His Word or any time we go to Him in prayer.  The Bible tells us God Is Love (I John 4:16).  His very nature is love.  I pray you will enjoy that beautiful gift, a gift God gives freely.

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