He holds me within His palm;
To know that He knows every grain of sand,
And knows me too gives me a sweet calm;
In His Hands, He holds the stars true,
So can He not hold me secure too?'
There comes a time in one's life where childhood dreams and imaginations crumble into pieces of fragmented glass, into the inner ashes of the soul and are found buried deep down as lava and molten rock, cold, unfeeling, even at times hurting. Our dreams vanish through the fog of the window of our hearts and minds into the cold reality of the 'grown-up' world. How truly it was that the Apostle Paul wrote, 'When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but, when I became a man, I put away childish things. For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known. And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.' - Corinthians 13: 11-13 NKJV
But there is another facet, another aspect of 'the child' that I do not wish to let go of, the 'child' that Jesus spoke about. I long to treasure in my heart the child-like, the heart-felt, the strong and yet simple trusting faith, the love and joy in my Heavenly Father: a childlike trust and sensitivity to His Presence and His Voice not only in the big things of life, but also in the normal, mundane and even apparently silly stuff of every day. I remember those moments as a child sensing Him with me and knowing the quiet joy of His love as I tended my little baby dollies, or play-acted fantastical stories in our sunny little garden; where every blossom was a bloom from a palace garden and every piece of straw had some beauty and delight; where the little ants lining up in perfect order on the path seemed like such a profound wonder. I don't want to give that up. I do not want to loose the awe and wonder and recapturing and treasuring the splendor of God in the life He has given me. Of course, part of life as God made it is growing up - maturing - and it is silly and pointless to cling to childish 'dreams' and idealistic fancies: and yet I also believe there is a treasure in childhood that is beyond 'childish': it is seeing life with wide-eyed amazement and joy at every fresh petal, every smile, every breath of air... and see the face of God, His heart in those around me, my parents, my sisters or friends in the kitchen and in the bedroom; the joy and wonder in the mundane and routine.
But you know, I am starting to realize that the older and stronger I grow in Jesus, the Source of all Life and Joy, the more 'young' and 'child-like' I will be about the world, and the more I will be able to retain the Hope and Joy of my life in Him. I will be able to experience an even more beautiful appreciation for life (the painful, the joyful and the difficult), and gratitude and wonder in God. And my hope that is in God is this. It is that though I now see in a mirror and dimly and seem to loose a lot of that 'child-like wonder', I shall know face to face one day. I shall be amazed all over again. Now I know only in part, as in a fragment of long lost poetry, but then I will know just as I also am known. I may not understand or know now but as through dim windows and mirrors I know from the bottom of my heart that I am held within the hands of my God and I can believe that what He says is true. Though all fails and all turns to darkness, He is the same and unchanging in His love and purpose and character. His love - a love so great that every single love on this earth when compared with His fade into shadows, half-phantoms and ashes - is so strong, so fearful and beautiful and wonderful, so self-sacrificing and unfailing that I am nothing but overwhelmed at the thought that this all-consuming, Holy Love has been poured out and given to insignificant, sinful worms of His creation...to me. And so abundantly, so freely - indeed, He makes all things new and beautiful!