Saturday, March 8, 2014.
A normal evening. We push the clocks forward an hour tonight. In anticipation, we're rushing the kids to bed, sounding off the time to each other. "It's 6:30, which really means it's 7:30". "Oh no. It's now 7:30, which really means it's 8:30". Well, actually, that was just me counting down the hours. I tend to be a little dramatic at times.
About 7:45, WHICH REALLY MEANS 8:45, I've rocked the baby, held her longer than necessary, and finally lay her down on the pink chevron sheets to dream. As the routine goes, I head straight across the hallway to the growing boy's room, the one that first made me a mother. He is swallowed up in the queen-sized bed, covers up to his chin, watching Mars Needs Moms. How he decides what movie to watch each evening is still a mystery to me. Last night it was Veggie Tales. Tomorrow, it may be The Polar Express. Christmas is all in the heart, and this 4-year-old celebrates it year round. And yes, he falls asleep watching a movie. It's all about sanity these days.
He sees me enter the room, and his eyes light up. "Here's a spot for you, Momma". Sweet boy, momma is so tired. But I stoop down and nearly collapse beside him. He curls his body close to mine, and he is my baby once again. We chat about nothing and everything... Holy moments of childlike faith and questions I almost always have to really ponder before answering. As usual, I ask if he wants to pray. "No, you do it." I'm not surprised, as he becomes shy in these moments. I feel a nudge at my heart, and I know his heart is soft and ready. We've talked about Jesus over and over. We talk about Him living in our hearts when we ask him. My boy-child is known to pipe up from the backseat with questions that would make a theologian return to seminary. He knows the story of the cross. He knows Jesus "died to the cross", as he says it. He knows Jesus rose from that dark grave and lives. In fact, he told me tonight that "when I get older, I go to see Jesus in the sky". "When you get older, you go to see Jesus, too". "I want to go see Jesus in the sky".
I see these slivers of curiosity, and tonight seems different. I tell him of the little girl version of me who at 5 years old asked Jesus into her heart. I've asked him before if he ever wanted to do this, and he would laugh at me and change the conversation. Tonight, I didn't have to ask. I didn't prompt or tell him this was something that would change his life forever. I just shared my story in less than 2 minutes, and his response was quick and effortless.
"Tell Jesus I want Him in my heart".
I've never been more proud. I didn't think I could feel more connected to my child than I did before, but having him acknowledge on his own that He needed, WANTED Jesus brought our souls together.
Heaven held its breath. An unseen, beautiful presence filled the four walls, and I asked Jonah to pray with me. I asked him to repeat after me, and we slowly adventured into this new territory. With no more than 4 words at a time, we journeyed to the throne of Grace and met Jesus. A stumbling little boy who asked me to "not say so many words, I can't say all that", reminded me that the act is simple. It is humble. Flighty, flowery words that I love to write and say and read are not needed here. A simple sinner's prayer, 2-3 sentences, and my little boy made the most important decision of his life.
This was a holy moment underneath pirate bedding with "Mars Needs Moms" serenading us in the background. His eyes sparkled, and his mouth broke into a gigantic grin.
This Easter season will be precious. I pray he continues to walk with Jesus and keeps his childlike faith. The simple, humble, raw trust in Jesus who "died to the cross and is not dead". And I'm so thankful that my child will one day "go up into the sky to be with Jesus".