Ruthie was helping me set the table for breakfast this morning.
I love our new Sunday morning routine. We used to get up really early, race around the house to get ready for 8:30 worship, bark orders at the kids and occasionally each other, and toss a granola bar at each child in the back of the van. It was stressful and I usually spent half of worship giving over all the ugly words and thoughts I’d had that morning. Then, we’d have to apologize to each other and the kids after church. It was nice to have more of the day free, but we spent most of that extra time seeking forgiveness! We finally decided it was healthier to sleep in a bit and have a more relaxed morning and attend 11:00 AM worship. It was a hard sell for me, because I felt like we were wasting time, but after two weeks, I could see the fruit of a slower-paced Sunday morning.
Anyway, Ruthie was helping me set the table for the once-a-week breakfast we all eat together. She carried in the silverware and the cups of milk and juice; the vitamins and the napkins. As I filled each plate with banana bread, fruit and steaming hot scrambled eggs, she would carefully carry it to the place I directed…Olivia…Ruthie…Emma…and so on. When it came to Charlie’s plate I said, “And for our leader.” Ruthie gave me a funny look and said her new favorite word, “Huh?!” I explained, “Daddy is the leader of our home.” She gave me a funny look and then carried the plate to his spot at the head of the table.
A little later in the day, I saw her carrying two antique suitcases into her room.
“Ruthie, babe, what are you doing?”
“Hmmm. Where are you going?”
“Where is Daddy going?”
“Honey, we’re already home.”
“No we aren’t.”
“Where is home?”
“Heaven, silly. With Jesus.”
“Ohhhh. So, why are you packing to go to heaven?”
“Well, Daddy is leading us home, so I think we might need to take some things for the trip. I want to help!”
“You know, like you said this morning, ‘Daddy is leading us home.’ I told my Sunday School teacher Daddy was taking us on a trip to heaven and I needed to go home and pack my suitcases.”
(Mental note to self: Call the Sunday School teacher as soon as this conversation is over!)
“That’s very thoughtful, sweetheart. I think, though, we need to talk about this trip…”
Thank You, Lord, that you have a place ready for us, prepared for us to worship You and exalt You. Thank You for sweet Ruthie, who was ready and willing to follow her earthly dad to the place where our Eternal Dad is and will always be. Thanks for using her to remind me that this world is not my home, but rather, a place to learn and grow and wait for You to come for me or call me Home. Thank You for giving me a husband who is following You as You lead us onward and homeward. Thank You…In Jesus’ Name, Amen.