Adelade and Sawyer love to pretend that they’re running from monsters. They crouch behind furniture until they spot an imaginary horror, then they run, screaming, “It’s a monster! Hurry! Run!” And they scoot away as quickly as little legs will carry them, laughing all the way to safety.
Emerald can often be spotted trailing along after them, squealing with pleasure as she enjoys the excitement of running from an imaginary foe. She loves playing this game, and, in the safety of our cozy little parsonage, with her giggling running buddies, she seems to have no fear at all that they are running from something that should be seriously feared.
But, then her bedtime comes. And, I see her little eyes darting to all corners of the room. I can tell she’s putting out a concerted effort to be brave when she says, “Mama, is there no such thing as monsters?” I keep my voice light as I answer cheerily, “No, baby, there are no such things as monsters.” She lays down with her pink polka dot blankie and tells me that she loves me, then she turns on her side and closes those big blue eyes, content to believe that I am telling her the truth. That no monsters will be visiting her room tonight.
But, then I sit on the couch and I read about men and women and children in Syria who are being kidnapped. I read about beheadings. I read about child molesters and the porn industry. I read about human trafficking, senseless violence, and the abortion culture. And, I wonder if Emerald’s question is more relevant that I thought. I look around and I see monsters everywhere, and I wonder how long I can protect this little girl from the big bad world that is so much more menacing than the shadows that the dress up clothes in her room cast on the wall. It’s true no monsters will be visiting her room tonight. But, who knows how many she’ll encounter in her life on this planet? I wish I could tell her honestly that they don’t exist. I wish that our world were different.
But, when these thoughts begin to overwhelm, when the news stories seem too bleak, when I begin to panic about the direction that our culture seems to be headed, I remember that Jesus Christ is on His throne. I remember that nothing scares Him. I remember that His enemies will be a footstool for His feet. I remember that He holds our little world in the palm of His hand, and He will not let go of us.
I can trust Him with that baby girl.
Whatever happens in her life, He will there. He will be God. And, He will be directing her path.
These are good things to think about when the monsters seem a little too real. Sweet dreams, baby Emerald. God will hold you close.