Anyone who has ever been a parent - or just been around a child for any length of time - will tell you that they teach you far more than you will ever teach them . . .
A couple of weeks ago, my son - the smartest, handsomest, cutest, happiest and most loving little boy on the planet (Who me, biased?) - learned a new "trick". He's 14 months old, and new tricks are a specialty with him. He's very talented, and one his most amazing abilities involves his skill as a human alarm clock . . .
Promptly at 4:45 am, he woke up his Mama. As I dragged myself bleary-eyed to a sitting position, he began a very odd ritual. He clapped his hands, threw them up into the air and began to yell "Day-zoo! Day-zoo! Day-zoo!"
Day zoo. ?
My mind started working overtime. Since Pimsleur languages has yet to offer a course in toddler, I was on my own trying to translate this bit of communication. Well, he'd been to the zoo recently. Did he want to spend the day at the zoo?
So, brightly and happily, Mama says, "Oh yes, David Earl. One day soon we will spend a day at the zoo."
Ok, I'll try again. "Day at the zoo! Monkeys - screech, ooh-ooh, ah-ah. Day at the zoo!"
He's laughing at me, thinking, silly woman. You are SO wrong.
So, I pick him up and we do our daily hug-and-kiss fest before his six year old sister comes in and gets jealous. And I forget about Day-zoo, in more ways than one.
The ritual repeats itself over the next several mornings. Clap-clap-clap. Wave-wave-wave. "Day-zoo! Day-zoo! Day-zoo!" And I am still utterly clueless. Until Sunday morning.
We go to church, drop Noelle off at Sunday school and take our usual pew. I put him down beside me. And then I see it.
Clap-clap-clap. Wave-wave-wave. And with the biggest grin I have EVER seen . . . "Day-zoo! Day-zoo! Day-zoo!" My, my. How foolish am I? Day-zoo is toddler for Je-Sus. And I laughed. And others laughed. And we all thought it was cute. And I missed the point for yet another morning.
Until Monday. 4:45 a.m. I'm still asleep, but I hear it. Clap-clap-clap. Wave-wave-wave. "Day-zoo! Day-zoo! Day-zoo!" And then the Lord speaks to me in that strange way that He will sometimes. The old song began to play in my mind:
I woke up this morning with my mind . . . staid on Jesus
I woke up this morning with my mind . .. staid on Jesus
And as the melody played on in my brain, this question came with it: How many times have you sung that song? Did you ever REALLY mean it? Did you ever REALLY wake up and think of Me?
And as I watched my sweet baby son, I realized he is a whole lot smarter than I am. He's still a baby who needs assistance to do . . . everything . . . but he's learned the most important lesson of all. Where his first priority should be.
Clap-clap-clap. Wave-wave-wave. Day-zoo! Day-zoo!
I may be a slow-learner, but I know when the Master is teaching me a lesson. So I lifted my hands, and joined my son.
Clap-clap-clap. Wave-wave-wave. Day-zoo! Jesus! THIS is the way to start the day!
Four hands, two voices. One Father, watching over us both. Thank you, my son. You have this day made your mother proud, and wiser too.