She squirmed. Too much attention. Too much love in their voices.
The blur of lit candles. Dinnertime ritual turned upside down. Oh, that poor kid, coming unwound! She buried her face and cried while the family sang, “Happy Birthday to you!”
And all those expectant eyes—did she need to sing back, in return? All by herself? Panicked, she ran from the room.
“Come back to the table,” her mother coaxed. “Take my hand, we’ll do this together.”
I can still feel my mother’s slim hand tugging gently on mine, still feel the heat in my face. I wanted the ceiling to open, hoover me safely up to my room on the second floor.
For the next few years, the more candles Mom lit for me, the longer and harder I blushed. No big brother or big sister modeled a healthy response.
It can be awkward at any age to be celebrated.
May I have your attention
Monday (two years ago if you’re reading this now), I logged in to Facebook to announce the release of Where the Sky Opens, my first book. Your response staggered me.
I grinned. Then blushed. Worried that by noon I’d be too big for my britches, with an impossibly big head by dinnertime.
Am I the only one who wants attention, then half-revels, half-panics when it arrives?
For every cheer and exclamation point, every heart icon and loving comment, thank you, friends!
And thank you, God. Please, Maker of the cosmos, restore my sense of proportion. And humor. Help me walk this unfolding path in ways that delight and honor You. It’s feeling a little heady . . .
Corrie ten Boom, on attention
Corrie ten Boom, WWII death camp survivor, once said, “When people come up and give me a compliment—‘Corrie, that was a good talk,’ or ‘Corrie, you were so brave’—I gather each remark as if it were a flower. At the end of each day I lift up the bouquet of flowers I have gathered throughout the day and say, ‘Here you are, Lord, it is all Yours.’”
At the end of another singular day I am (still) gathering word blooms. Relishing each distinct, lingering fragrance: a nosegay of kindness and generosity.
God just might be saying: “Let me put these in water. They’ll keep better here.”
In this noisy-get-noticed-now! world that craves hype and celebrity, I remember that, in Christ, you and I are urged to “shine like stars in the universe as [we] hold out the word of life . . . (Phil. 2:15b NIV).”
Listen. Is that God speaking?
Take my hand, we’ll do this together.
What words of life are you called to hold out to another?
For those interested in buying Where the Sky Opens, click here: http://amzn.to/1Ri7NFM
Or buy direct from the publisher here, for a 20% discount: http://wipfandstock.com/where-the-sky-opens.html
Or visit Auntie’s Bookstore in Spokane.
And if anyone is inclined to leave a Reader Review on Amazon, I’ll be over-the-moon grateful!