Yesterday morning, I went in to wake my daughter up for school as I normally do. However, instead of waking her, I just sat and stared at her as she slept my hand resting gently on her leg. My mind drifted back to a couple of days earlier.
We had attended the annual Greek festival here as we do every year. They periodically have the children come up and dance together. This is my daughter’s favorite part. We were just before sitting down to eat when the children were called up. Food forgotten, she raced up to the stage to join the others.
A line had already formed of children holding one another’s hands when my daughter arrived on stage. I sat and watched as she tried to figure out how to join in. It is times like this when I lament the fact that she is an only child.
I tried to give her time to figure out what to do and she did. She opted to dance on her own, to her own beat and in her own way. She was having a good time but then I saw her stop. I could tell she was trying again to figure out how to join in with the other children. At that point, I went up to the stage and called her over. I told her to just go take the hand of the girl at the end of the line and join in. And that’s what she did.
Apparently, as I made my way back to my seat and began to eat my food, the girl whose hand she had taken shook her hand away from Rachel and acted like she didn’t want her to be there.
Rachel is very sensitive and doesn’t shake this kind of thing off very easily. She’s like me that way. Although, in all fairness, the act was rude, and probably would have hurt anyone’s feelings, sensitive or not.
Not long after that, the time for the children to return to their parents had come, and Rachel came back to sit with us. I had not witnessed the incident with the other girl on the stage, nor had my husband. Rachel looked at him with those big, blue eyes, and in a plaintive tone asked, “Daddy, will you dance with me?”
She went on to explain what had happened, and I thought my heart would break. I could get on a soapbox here, but I won’t.
As I sat there beside her sleeping form yesterday morning thinking about this, all I wanted to do was keep her right there with me. I didn’t want her out of my sight. I sat there and prayed, “Lord, I want so much to be able to protect her from the hurt in this world. People can be so mean.” And I heard Him speak to my heart, “Yes, my child, I know. Look what they did to My Son.”
And yet, He loves us anyway. I am so thankful for that. For even though I was not there the day Jesus was crucified, my sin put Him there just as if I had been.
Dear Lord, help me to teach my daughter that people will be mean. It is our sinful nature, but you provided a way out for us. His Name is Jesus. She knows Him, and I am thankful for that as well. Help me to remember that you knew her and loved her first, and that You are the ultimate Protector. In Jesus’ Name I pray, Amen.