I have a few goals as a parent. I want to teach my daughter to love deeply, to live fully, to value community, to consider the needs of others before her own.  I want her to know and own her strengths, to lean into her talents and callings, and to know also her weaknesses, to own them and to see them as ways in which we are reminded that life is not a lone ranger type of journey.

Simple to state, difficult to achieve.

Most of all, I want her to know the God that dreamed her up, formed her and sustains her every breath.  I want her to know that God is crazy about her.  That God is crazy in love with all of us humans.  I want her to love the God story – the Scripture.

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We’ve been reading from her Storybook Bible every night since she was about three months old.  It’s been a part of our bedtime ritual since before there was really even bedtime.  As she’s gotten older though, her love for the book has gotten rough at times.  Excited fingers have tattered the pages.

For months I have scolded her “No Cadence, we must be gentle with our books…and especially this book.”
I even resorted to putting her Bible high on the shelf where she could not reach it.

“Bible? Bible?”
She would ask as she reached up for the book.

“No baby, you must learn to be gentle first.”

I gave in the other day and handed her the book.

“Bible!” she cried, leafing through story after story with wide eyes.

I smiled.

Listening in from the other room as I worked, I heard her rythmically

“It’s Jesus, Jesus, Jesus. It’s Jesus.”

as the pages turned.

I wondered…

What if I were only granted access to the Story once I could care for it with the respect it is due?

What if I were only allowed to read when God was certain I would not tear out my favorite pages with the eagerness of a small child, leaving the whole story lessened and tattered?

I doubt I would have even had the chance to read the Book yet if this were true.

Do I still look in amazement at the Story?

Do I hear the song, page after page in Scripture

“It’s Jesus, Jesus, Jesus. It’s Jesus.”

Or am I too busy creating space on a dusty, high up shelf to make room for a book that I would one day hope to love.

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2 thoughts on “A Love for the Book

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