It wasn’t the best morning. I was working from home—trying to handle phone calls and video meetings and lots of writing projects that needed immediate attention. My children were bouncing around the house, wrestling one minute and jumping off furniture the next.
I don’t mind a little exuberance, but I had been trying so hard to keep people out of the emergency room. And working from home can be a bit of a juggling act. After a video call where I tried to sound professional above the thuds and squeals in the background, I lost my patience.
“Outside! Now!” I said—louder than necessary. And they raced out to the yard.
About a half-hour later, I was deep in a complicated project when I heard the door open and the boys bounced back into the house. Somewhere in the corner of my mind, I heard a cabinet open and water running.
A minute later, our younger son hurried into the room holding a water glass full of forsythia he had cut from the bushes in our yard.
“Here you go!” he said, smiling his enormous smile, pleased with himself, thrilled with the forsythia, and happy to see me.
I melted, overcome with shame at my impatience and awed by the size of our little boy’s compassionate, forgiving heart. I had raised my voice and sent him outside in frustration. He returned with a smile and flowers he picked just for me.
This is how God loves me, I thought. I stopped everything and put my arms around my son.
I get anxious and frustrated. I get distracted. I fail to notice the beauty and the joy around me because I’m too preoccupied with what seems to be most pressing, most important in the moment. I fall and sin over and over again.
But God loves me completely. He knows me inside and out. He loves me as I am—impatient and struggling and frustrated and worrying about all the wrong things—knowing that deep down I am His.
When I am at my lowest and weakest, God comes to me the way our little boy does—offering love, peace, and joy. I just need to be ready to encounter Him.
In these last weeks of Lent, as we feel distracted by all the world is throwing our way, may we find a way to set some of that aside. May we open our hearts to receive God’s love, knowing that even when we might feel we are at our worst, He sees us for who we are—His beloved children.
Wherever you are on this journey through life, God loves you with a deep, unconditional love that will last forever.