Several months ago, Adelade heard through the grapevine that a girl at her school called her ugly. She didn’t know the girl, but naturally she was distressed to hear that anyone would say something like this about her. At the time, we talked about it and I reassured her that nothing could be farther from the truth. She seemed to accept that, and we moved on.
But, recently Adelade has gotten to know this little girl a bit better. Today she asked, Mama, do you remember when that girl said I was ugly?
As if I could ever forget that. I cringed, waiting for news of a new offense.
Well, I don’t think they heard her right. Now that I’ve been around her, I don’t think she would ever say that.
I smiled, marveling at her determination to see the best in everyone. I’ll bet you’re right, I said, and willed myself to believe it was true. I wondered how kids who are so amazing grow up into cynical adults.
In my rearview mirror I watched her gorgeous little freckled face smile at the thought that this girl was just misunderstood, not mean. And I thought of how many hard lessons that she has ahead of her. I hope and pray with all my heart that she never loses her ability to see what is precious about the people around her. If she ends up a cynical grown up, I pray to God with all my heart that I am not the cynical adult who leads her there.
She inspires me to see the good.
Sawyer interrupted my thoughts. Adelade, even if she DID say that, you are NOT ugly. You are not ugly, okay? Nobody’s ugly. Well, except the Devil. He’s reeeaaallly ugly.
I really don’t think that I could love these people any more without just exploding into ten million pieces. Kids are the greatest. I wonder if one reason that Jesus didn’t let them keep the little children away from Him was because He felt more love and acceptance from that little group than from any other humans. It may have been a comfort to Him to see the trust and love in their eyes, not an ounce of suspicion, not a hint of an agenda. Just their sweet expectation that He is wonderful.
This summer, I’m making it my mission to be more like a child, seeing the good, and saying so.