Last Friday I had a phone call from the local Primary School. I was informed that our eldest daughter, Elen, was feeling a bit under the weather and wanted to come home early. Naturally, I went straight down to get her.
Once she was home and surrounded by the familiarity of family, it became clear that, while she was still getting over a cold, there was a bit more to it than just feeling unwell. Bless her, she’s only 4 and is having to adjust to the arrival of our beautiful twins (and all the attention they get!), as well as having to get used to the new full-length school day AND having to eat way too much of her dad’s limited cooking. All that, coupled with a minor incident in school that had left her feeling a bit overwhelmed, a bit fragile and in need of some QT with her fam.
As we chatted over tea it was clear that she was still quite emotional and anxious about going back to school. We made sure that she had a fun-filled weekend, and then as we tucked her into bed the evening before she was due to go back to school, I felt led to read her this verse from Philippians 4:
“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” (v8)
I encouraged her that if she started to feel afraid or sad, she should think about good things and pure things and lovely things and excellent things. I asked her to think about who or what she could focus on to help her think this way. When it came to things that are “worthy of praise” she said she should think about God.
Anyway, it was heart-wrenching dropping her off the following morning and both myself and Michelle were praying for her throughout the day. So you can imagine my delight as she bounced out of the doors at the end of the day with a big fat grin and a fist full of pictures that she was desperate to show me. Here’s how it went down:
Elen: “Look at this one daddy!”
Me: “Oh, that’s nice love! is it Autumn trees?”
Elen: “No, it’s Calvary! Look, there’s the 3 crosses on the top of the hill!!”
Me: “Ooops! Oh yeah, course it is. WOW!! What a fantastic thing to paint!!!”
As I chatted to her on the way home, she explained why she’d drawn Calvary:
“I started to feel sad and I just wanted to think about God’s love and so I thought about Jesus dying on the cross and wanted to paint that.”
I was stunned.
How incredible that the Cross of Jesus Christ is where my 4 year old little girl chose to run for comfort, for security and for strength to face the day.
Calvary is for kids too!
I love that.
Glory to God.