Tag Archives: children

Who Is Calling For Your Help Today?

An ordinary day. An ordinary walk.

Just my youngest daughter and I at the downtown mall.

Suddenly I heard the sound.

So faint I almost missed it.

“Please help me.”

I glanced around wondering where those words had come from.

My eyes fell on the form of an elderly woman crouched on the steps of a building.

I slowed my steps to look and I heard those words again.

“Please help me.”

My heart leapt with mixed longing and caution.

Alone she sat while people walked back and forth busy about their plans.

Her aged eyes met mine

and she spoke again. “Please help me.”

Placed before her on the brick walk was a solitary bowl containing a few bills.

I kept on slowly walking pondering the need suddenly put right on my path.

“Was she really in need?”

She was clothed simply as far as I could see. But those words pierced my heart.

As my daughter and I walked on past we softly spoke.

“We should give something to her,” we agreed.

I knew that we didn’t have much with us. And was this a genuine need?

In this day it is common to ask this question.

And then I thought again. My daughter –young and growing so quickly these days

was learning. What would my life teach her?

Caution? To hold tightly to what we have? To shut our hearts to the needs of another?

Lord, help me live with open heart and open hands, I prayed.

He knew the bigger need at that moment.

In the distance I could hear the shaky voice call again, “Please help me.”

And in that moment I knew.

Life is lived by giving;

not grasping.

By emptying ourselves;

not hoarding our treasured possessions.

By loving;

not selfishness.

It took only a few second until we stood in front of her.

We both rummaged in our wallets.

Time seemed to stop as I watched my daughter step forward

to place our offering in the bowl.

Multiply that simple offering, Lord, and bless this dear soul.

Yes, Lord.

In as much as you do it unto her you do it unto Me. (Matt. 25:37)

A sacred moment when we touched His Robe.

Let me never become so cautious and careful

that I miss an opportunity to join You in Your Work here

and I turn deaf ears to a cry for help.

“Please help me.”

Who is calling for your help today?

PC NoelleBraniPhotography

Sleeping Dolls, Silent Dreams

Twenty six years ago these words were penned. My heart overflowed with longing and pain.

May these words somehow comfort the heart of some woman today

who, too, longs and waits. He knows your heart. He cares.mother's day sleeping dolls, silent tears

 

A few months ago, I was cleaning in the attic

and came upon a big, old box tightly sealed, covered with dust, unmarked.

Wondering what was in it, I ran for the scissors and cut the tape.

As I opened the lid and saw what was inside

my heart twisted in sudden pain.

There lay my beloved dolls, my childhood playmates, sleeping.

Tenderly I lifted the large baby dolls- the one with soft brown curls and deep blue eyes.

I gently held her in my arms.

Her eyes were closed –

that peaceful smile still on her face.

As I held her, smoothing the little gingham dress and touching the knitted booties

My mind drifted back to days of long ago.

I had always loved playing with dolls.

And while I dressed them, fed them, and rocked them,

I dreamed about the day when I would hold my very own child.

My own flesh.

I wanted a house full of children, laughter and giggles.

But

the years have come and gone – and today

Those dreams seem further from reality than ever before.

It hurts.

The longing is so deep.

As I rose to lay my sleeping doll back in the box,

Tears trickled silently down my cheeks.

“Oh Father, You know how deeply I long;

How many times I’ve asked, Father. You know that I’m getting older.

Someday it will be too late.

“Daughter of Mine,” I heard Him whisper,

“do you really trust Me with all your dearest dreams,

with all your deepest longings?

My plans for you are the best. Just wait. You’ll see.

Now….feed My sheep.”

I closed the lid to my silent dreams and arose to serve my Lord—

grateful that He knows what is best.

 

Seeing With Your Heart

Many years ago I worked in a Head Start program for the summer.

Precious memories of those energetic four year olds flood my mind.

All different colored eyes and shapes.

A variety of backgrounds

Two wearing glasses and some struggling with very simple skills

but all so eager to learn. For school.

I was preparing to be a teacher and loved this chance to work with these kids –

many whom had much less of this world’s advantages than I.

I left early to go to work each day. As if I couldn’t get enough of my time there.

Giggles and laughter.

Learning and growing.

I remember sitting at

the large wooden rectangular table

at snack time. Littles ones on each side.

Wiggly  bodies. Tiny little hands. Beads of sweat on their noses sometimes.

Dimples. Grins.

They’d chatter back and forth and I absorbed every moment of their delightful company.

For the first time I knew that I was in my niche.

Children.

My eyes saw treasure and potential and value.

But my heart pulled me to look beneath the surface

and so I gazed with wonder.

I did the math and saw that the year I was 16

they were born.

Me, dealing with Latin, Geometry, friends, music and so much more

and their tender lives just beginning.

Me, living with advantages  and them with so little. Heartbreaking little.

Some needing a good bath and their nails clipped.

Others obviously needing so much more. Why was it so?

My heart saw their innocence. Their worth.

My heart saw their possibilities.

My heart saw their disadvantages

and I longed to do more

be more

give more.

Yes, the years have passed but I still see those precious little ones

and am grateful for that brief summer

when I was privileged to work with them.

All around us are folks with many, many needs.

It is all too easy to not even see them.

to be blind to the disadvantages, the needs whether physical, emotional, social or spiritual of another.

But we must resist that tendency – the numbing of our senses.

Lord, open my eyes and help me to see

and open my heart to respond to the needs calling to us all around.

See with your heart and it will change your life.

It continues to change mine.

How about you?

 

 

feb 29 heart