Daily Archives: October 8, 2012

Shining Moments

Each time I went to Russia I was acutely aware

    that this was the place of my daughters’ birth.

That they would want some things to represent this important place of their birth.

I went around on each trip with eyes wide open

    looking and trying to decide what would have meaning.

Although there are a few places in the US where you can purchase

    items made in Russia

    there are not many.

I remember walking Red Square with vendors coming up to me

    trying to sell things.

Big furry hats, toys, dolls and then what caught my eye.

Matryoshka dolls

They came in all sizes, shapes and colors.

The Russian matryoshka doll otherwise known as nesting doll

    refers to a set of wooden dolls arranging in decreasing size

    and placed within each  other.

All over I saw them oftentimes with varying themes.

I liked the ones with a Christmas theme but I saw plenty with themes of

Easter, spring, famous politicians, movie stars, etc.

So I bought a matryoshka doll.

I made three trips to Russia. One to adopt my oldest daughter

    and two trips to adopt my youngest.

We have three matryoshka dolls. Each very different

          but each one so exquisitely beautiful.

I cannot look at those dolls without remembering a people

   that showed me kindness and marvelous hospitality each time I traveled there.

Like  us

    there is more to each doll than meets the eye.

At first glance you might not even detect that it opens in half

     revealing a small

          identically looking doll inside

              and so on until you get to the smallest doll.

All too often we glance at another and decide we know them.

But people are far more complicated than that.

Many times it takes a long time to really get to know someone

    to see what is not so evident

    to understand the heart

          the dreams

          and the longings.

Yes, we are all complex

   created in the image of God

     to know Him

        and to make Him known.

“I will praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;

    Your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” Psalms 139:14

Knowing that helps us to deal gently with our brothers and sister.

To seek to understand before we strive to be understood.

To listen

    really listen to the heart of another.

Everyone we see is like a walking matryoshka doll

    with deep layers

    oftentimes onion like layers of emotions and experiences.

Maybe if we hold off on making assumptions

    Yes, if we’d take into consideration that there is more

    Much, much more within the heart of everyone

 We could begin to build bridges of understanding.

Do you think so?  Sometimes we only have a short time with another.

Standing in the food store

   Passing on the sidewalk

      Sitting beside each other at church.

But a short time might be all we need to make a huge difference.