It had been a strange day of laughter, tears and hugs. Some of the-best-of-the-best I know had been there. Preachers. Wonderful preacher-wives. Professors. Business professionals. Religious leaders. Campus ministers. Old folks. Children.
We had gathered to say, “Good bye” to a sweet sister in Christ. She was the wife of a dear friend, a fellow-preacher I deeply respect and love.
I was on my way home, thankful for the hope we have in Jesus. But I was hurting. It was like the broken heart of my friend was beating in my chest. I was going “home,” to my wife. He was returning to a “house,” without wife. I felt empty. Sad. That’s when I met Lilah in one our nation’s major airports.
She was about four and, man, she had “the moves.” She was giving her new headphones a workout trying to keep rhythm with the music flooding her senses.
Her innocence, her awkward frolics and her childish joy were infectious. At the end of song I heard her say, “AWESOME.” That’s when I couldn’t stand it any longer. I got her mother’s attention and whispered, “No, she’s AWESOME!” I had no idea how much.
I asked for permission to introduce you to this beautiful preschooler because she has a rare disorder that keeps her in chronic pain. There’s not a moment that goes by but that Lilah is hurting. Music inspires her to move. It helps her endure.
So…here are two lessons I learned that day from “Little Lilah.”
It’s life (Job 14:1). We are going to hurt. But, there’s always a “Little Lilah” reminding us that others might be hurting more, challenged by a pain that won’t go away.
Dear God, providentially open my eyes to see these dear people. Use the blessings of my life to bless their life.
It’s helpful (Psalm 13:1-3, 5-6). We are going to struggle through a lot that’s awful. But there’s always a “Little Lilah” reminding us to sing about all that is AWESOME.
Dear God, forgive me when I complain about “the bad” and fail to see all “the good” you have brought into my life.
Little children are special. They’re constantly learning. But they are constantly teaching as well. If those of us that have been weathered and jaded would only pause and take notice, we might learn something.
Everywhere we turn there is a “Little Lilah” from whom we can learn.