Originally Written for 9/21/08, Issue 1.5
Last weekend I went in to get Chloe on Saturday morning from her crib. She had been unusually quiet, but I knew she was asleep. The evening before Melissa and I had gone out for a date night, so a baby-sitter put her to bed for the evening.
When I walked into her nursery she was standing at the edge of the bed, like she normally does, but she didn’t have on her super-excited “I’m so happy to see you!” face. Instead, she stood there with this look of confused terror, as if to say, “Help me, daddy, something’s wrong and I don’t know what it is.” She also had a little bit of dirt on her forehead and I thought, “What did you and Katie do last night before you went to bed?”
I then looked on the floor and saw her diaper laying there, and I quickly realized the dirt on her forehead wasn’t dirt at all. She was covered, from head to toe. Poor girl had somehow taken off her diaper, then made a mess in her bed, then, I think, she played in it during the morning because it was all over her hands, in her hair, and it was wiped on the side of the crib, the wall, and her crib toy. Now I understood the look of confused terror.
I suppose every parent has these experiences, so this is probably nothing new to most of you. I picked her up (very, very carefully) and took her to the bathroom, where Melissa was ready with the bath. While Melissa cleaned the baby I cleaned the crib.
And the floor.
And the wall.
And the crib toys.
And took off the sheets…
And collected all the…
Well, you get the idea.
Anyway, I realize looking back that Chloe had a very appropriate response. She was covered in filth, and she didn’t know what to do, but she knew where to go and to whom to look. When I walked in she looked to me to help her out of the problem she had created.
Isn’t this the perfect picture of us and God? We are covered in filth from sin, and when we turn to Him, He picks us up, tells us He loves us, and then cleans us up. Chloe didn’t know how to clean herself up – in fact, she couldn’t do it even if she wanted, and so in her innocence she turned to the only ones who could – Mommy and Daddy – and we took care of her. She had had her fun, now she realized she needed cleaning.
Too often in life you and I have our fun, too, playing in the filth of this world. Only too late do we realize that what we’ve been playing in isn’t what we though. But, unlock Chloe, too often we try to cover it up or clean up ourselves, only to make it worse. We need to turn to God, lift our arms, and with an attitude of both sorrow and hope, call out to our “Abba”.
If I’ll pick up my little girl covered in, well, stuff, then I’m confident He’ll pick us up since we’re His children. As much as I love my Chloe, I know He loves me (and you) infinitely more than that.
Let’s remember that this week.