And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
Last Friday, our granddaughter, Virginia Rose, spends the night with us. She is quieter than usual when I pick her up and seems ready for a nap. And yes indeed, she actually falls asleep on the drive from her home to ours.
"It's a growth spurt," my daughter, Sarah, assures me. "Virginia has been coming home from school every day this week saying she's tired."
So we spend the afternoon and evening engaged in calm activities with Virginia, and put her to bed right on time. I send myself off to bed at an earlier than usual time, sensing that I'm going to be needed bright and early in the morning.
As soon as I open my bedroom door and close it softly again so that Danny, aka Papa, can sleep in, I see that Virginia is wide awake in our guest room she affectionately calls hers. "Hi, Gammie!" Her cheerful greeting resounds in the hallway.
"Shh," I say with a smile. "Papa is still sleeping. We need to speak softly, okay?"
"Okay," she whispers. I grab her clean clothes as we head for the bathroom for the morning routine. Dressed and chipper after a good night's rest, Virginia is her customary chatterbox self.
We retreat to the dining area where I, in my coffee-deprived state, fix her a bowl of corn flakes and hasten to brew the only liquid I know that will catapult me onto the same speed plain upon which Virginia is racing. Almost before her cereal is finished and I've taken my first sip of coffee, she wants to go out on our deck to see the birds and squirrels.
To her surprise and delight, Virginia spies two deer frolicking in our neighbor's yard. "Let's go see the deer, Gammie!"
"I'll take you outside in a few minutes, Virginia," I tell her. "Let me have some more coffee, and then we'll go feed the birds and squirrels." I'm thinking that getting her outdoors will lessen the odds of our conversations disturbing Danny's much-needed rest.
When it's time to go, I throw a jacket over my pajama top and head for the stairs. Suddenly, I hear, "Gammie, are you going outside in your pajamas? What if the deer see you dressed like that? Had I just taken a swallow of coffee, it would have been spewed out, guaranteed!
"It will be fine, Virginia," I say, a grin glued to my face. "The deer will forgive me, I promise."
Comforted by my words, Virginia is all in, and our expedition forges ahead. We feed the birds and squirrels, explore the yard for air-soft BBs, and then wander into the front yard to admire the daffodils and the one jonquil who's braved its bloom.
"I want that one, Gammie," Virginia asserts, claiming the stem before I can utter a protest.
My heart breaks as I watch her break the flower stem, recalling my father's words, "Martha Jane, don't pluck the wildflowers. Let them live in their time where they are. Their beauty is best admired from afar."
The flower comes inside with us. Virginia lays it on the table. I am so busy tending to her and preparing to take her back home, I let the unfortunate jonquil to sojourn there.
Right before it's time to go home, Virginia gingerly picks up the flower and hands it to me. "Gammie, I made a mistake to pick this," she confesses, a repentant look on her face. "It had a bud getting ready to bloom. Now it won't."
I take the proffered flower and give her a reassuring smile. "I think if I place this in water, we might just see that bud bloom after all.
And miracle of miracles, it does!
What miracles are you seeing in your life today?
Prayer: Father, there are so many miracles that surround us daily when we open the eyes of our hearts to see them. Let us ever be faithful, hopeful, and trusting that You can breathe new life into us through our acts of repentance and our willingness to be guided by You. Let us always trust that You are working all for good. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.