“The Lord your God is with you. He is mighty to save. He will quiet you with His love. He will rejoice over you with singing.” Zephaniah 3:17.
It was a simple gesture that displayed a desire to delight his grandchildren with sweet surprises. On hearing of his two grandkids utter delight in a pile of leaves on an usually warm November morning, he decided to spend part of his evening raking an even bigger pile of leaves to welcome them to a new day.
My mom gave away the surprise to me: “You should see what your Dad did…” Never one to boast or share about his own accomplishments or gestures of love, my Mom pointed out the window. He raked a big pile of leaves for the kids.
They will be ecstatic to find a pile of leaves taller than their heads and wider than their combined little bodies. While the sun has risen, they haven’t found it yet… but when they do, their Autumn fun 101 training will prepare them for how to respond. And. there will be joy and. squeals. of. delight.
I have a quiet moment to rest and reflect on all God has given to us… all He has provided. I have seen his extravagant love over and over again in the love of four very devoted and smitten grandparents and many, many others. All the grandparents have crazy busy work schedules (and my Mom is even afraid of flying) but they all made time to fly over the ocean to spend time with their grandkids. They each pay attention to the details of their grandkids’ lives and surprise them with good gifts. My father-in-law recently surprised Sam with a Spiderman suit that he wore for hours, mask and all. They have driven crazy distances in short amounts of time to be there during a scary crisis and unknown diagnosis. They simply enjoy these precious little people who are growing quickly and remind me that our Heavenly Father is one who pays attention to what brings joy to His children… and He surprises them with simple things and extravagant gifts that show that He is the God who sees, who loves, who pursues and cares… no matter how crazy life gets. If grandparents, who are human and broken, can love so well, how much more beautifully does our Father in Heaven, who is perfect, without sin, holy and whole, love His children??
Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights,
who does not change like shifting shadows. James 1:17
I could (and might) list hundreds and hundreds of examples of friends and even strangers taking time to care and love us in such amazing, generous ways. My prayer is that in this new season of restoration and renewal, the love that has been so generously lavished on us can then be poured out from our family to others who are struggling in far greater ways.
Okay God… I’m starting to get it.
And in case it takes me a while to say it again, thank you Mom and Dad, Larry and Fran for showing us and our children such extravagant love.