apples of gold in settings of silver.”
In their pre-school years, our cherubs both added memorable words to our family’s vocabulary. Each of them had a few words they couldn’t quite pronounce that came out adorably close to the real word. Gabrielle had a few we use frequently. She called a carousel a “casserole” and a sandwich a “sam-a-lich”. So cute.
Well, the other day, at the ripe old age of eight, she spontaneously came up with another word we are adding to our family vocabulary. I was doing dishes at the kitchen sink as I heard her bouncing down the stairs from her bedroom rushing to talk to me.
“Mommy, I have to tell you something. And please don’t, don’t…”, waving her hands in the air and hesitating for a moment searching for just the right word…
Laughing aloud at the cuteness of the word, I asked, “Scoo-ka-ma-bob-a? What does that mean?” “It means freak out. Please don’t freak out, Mommy.” Ouch.
The cuteness and conviction in that moment was bittersweet. Pleasantness and painfulness in my heart were wrapped up in two small sentences spoken by my daughter. I was pleased and delighted that she bounced the down stairs and rushed to me with her concerns. I was tickled by her wit and words.
But my heart was pricked, necessarily, by the convicting truth she had innocently spoken. Sometimes I scoo-ka-ma-bob-a. Oh, Lord, how I don’t want to scoo-ka-ma-bob-a! I want to honor God and represent Him well to my family. I want to yield to His Holy Spirit’s work in and through me, especially during moments that bait me to freak out. And when I let my flesh get the better of me and I do scoo-ka-ma-bob-a anyway, I always want to go back to the kids, tell them I didn’t represent Christ’s love in that moment and ask them for forgiveness.
Neither she nor I remember, only a few days later, what had happened that she thought I might scoo-ka-ma-bob-a when she told me. Perhaps a bottle of nail polish spilled on her carpet or an earring fell in the toilet water. We don’t remember. And it doesn’t matter. The lesson I learned will reverberate in my heart for my life time.
Our cherubs are such beautiful sanctification tools in our lives. God lovingly and graciously uses them to make us holy. And if I am not being made holy through His truth, they will not see the Lord in me. With humility, thankfulness and a desperately teachable heart, I want to learn what God wants to teach me through them. One lesson this week: “Don’t scoo-ka-ma-bob-a, Mommy.”
So, we add this word aptly spoken to our family vocabulary. It is like an apple of gold in my heart. And when we use it, my heart will smile for both the love and lesson swaddled within.