I’ve spent my morning in a coffee shop on Main Street in Chattanooga. It’s more bustling and delicious than Starbucks. There are fresh flowers in a tin pot on my table. The exposed brick walls, dim lighting and soft music create an inviting vibe. Plus, I ordered yummy grit cakes with kale and poached eggs for breakfast. All very lovely, but what’s really filling my cup is a few minutes ALONE to read and think and write a few words. Summer is my favorite season, but by its end I’m ready for this–quiet, contemplative mornings in coffee shops.
Sam is currently at orientation for middle school, Nate turned fifteen last week, and Dub is looking at colleges. Nate is my most talkative child and it feels like just a few minutes ago that I’d pick him up from preschool. He’d be so anxious to tell me all about what he’d learned, sharing fun details about his classmates and his beloved Miss Nancy. I’d kneel so we’d be eye to eye and he’d know he had my full attention. He was such a darling and entertaining child. Now I need to look up, way up, to meet his gaze and it’s legal for him to start driving! What on earth?
But don’t you think the tender and attentive love of a mother for a child is beautiful thing? Have you considered that God’s love is even better? Our Heavenly Father metaphorically kneels to meet us eye-to-eye. He willingly and humbly engages just at our level. His tenderness is perhaps evident most in the incarnation itself. He gave up heaven to come to earth, to show us how to live. Then in His death He paid for all our sins. God’s love is perfect. He never fails.
As I relish this quiet morning, my prayer is that my boys will know that they are loved by God in a tender and attentive way. That this truth will be the anchor of their lives.
Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.”
Being rooted in Christ paints a picture of being firmly attached, being fed and nourished in an organic way. It’s an ideal in sharp contrast to the way of the world. Henri Nouwen writes about being haunted by the question of whether if anyone truly knew him they’d still love him. He wrote, “That agonizing question, rooted in my inner shadow, kept persecuting me and made me run away from the very place where that quiet voice calling me the Beloved could be heard.”
Where are you rooted? And can you hear the quiet voice calling you Beloved?