Thursday, January 28, 2016

Beauty at the Crossroads: Which Way Do I Go?

by Danetta Kellar

We bumped and bounced along the narrow road, white dust floating up in plumes like baby powder around our four-wheel drive. Confident and laughing, we chattered about the different animals we encountered in the savanna that afternoon. The lion who had taken a lazy nap on the rock just by the road. The giraffes who danced a ballet duet with their necks.

Our happy reverie was abruptly interrupted as our driver brought us to a jolting stop. The road ended in a perfect t-junction, and something was standing right in the middle of it. Something BIG. As the dust settled, we began to make out what it was.

An elephant, twice as large as our vehicle, stood smack in our way. Defiant and angry, she raised her long trunk and trumpeted louder than the archangel himself.

We all stopped breathing for a moment, not able to be afraid and breathe at the same time.

Our driver looked up at her, grabbed the wheel more tightly, and revved the engine like a monster. Again, and again, he roared. 

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Lord, Make Me a Mary Mother (My Name is Martha)

by Danetta Kellar

I saw the sticky notes while she was still sleeping in a soft pile of pink ruffled pillows. 

Finish my Lego set today. Play the piano for Daddy. Make a school room for my doll. Color a picture for Mommy. The white notes were plastered across her bookcase like little snowflakes stuck on a windowpane. Just by her head, so she would see them first thing in the morning.

My little planner is very busy. She loves to build things, gather people together, and write books. She talks about Laura and Mary like they are her sisters and wonders aloud what it would look like if her room were a loft in a Little House on the Prairie.

She is watching me, and listening. 

I can hear myself in her, see myself in her, and watch myself in her. If I am not careful, if I do not slow down soon, she will have learned very well from me how to go and go and go, to do and do and do, making list after list after list, faster and faster, until she is all grown up and I am left wishing I had shown her how to slow down and sit awhile.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Trees in the Nursery: When Children Grow Up

by Danetta Kellar

Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners, or sit in the seat of mockers. But his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night. 

He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. -Psalm 1:1-3

When children first come, it seems childhood will last forever. 

The delightful stages, the difficult ones, all seem timeless. We hope our faithfulness will outweigh our failures in the end. We pray to one day see them like trees planted by streams of water, yielding fruit in season with leaves that will not wither.

For many years since my children were born, I have taken time at the beginning of each year to seek the Lord for them, setting goals for the upcoming year. It has been a reassuring exercise, a road map for the uncertainties of each season, a benchmark for growth as we look back time after time.

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Do Not Despise Small Beginnings

By Danetta Kellar

Do not despise these small beginnings, for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin. Zechariah 4:10 NIV

I lay there in the dark, alert and ready to leap out of bed at any given second. The sound of the rat running back and forth on the bed post inches from my head had me frozen in place, immobilized and afraid to breathe. What on earth is he carrying in his mouth with such dedication? I wondered to myself. Back and forth, back and forth. Scratch, scramble, swoosh, slip, patter-patter-patter over my head. Again. And again. He was very busy, and paid me no mind whatsoever. 

All of my senses, however, were completely trained upon his every move. I was trying very hard not to scream.