When my kids play, I see God illustrating resilience. I see my daughter look at the tippy-top of the swing set and it’s as if God says “this is how high you can reach.” I follow her gaze toward the towering branches of a tree and I know she will find a way to get there. She has to start low first. As the sun burnishes her arms, they toughen and fill out as she learns to hold her own weight. Then she swings, climbing hand over hand across the monkey bars at the park.
There are days when discouragement shakes her arms scared, and she needs me to hold her as she monkey crawls across the bars. Sometimes she is too tired, but like a child, she doesn’t recognize fatigue, she just sees the top of the world she hasn’t reached yet.
She comes home from school and tells me about her friend, the gymnast, who can swing and flip and nearly fly over those monkey bars. She wants to do that too, and instead of listening to the dream thief that likes to whisper “you can’t”, she lets her dreams expand. Month after month, she climbs higher, farther. Occasionally she gets stuck in the tree out back and I have to rescue her, but we just laugh and she keeps climbing.
On her last day of school, we meet on the playground. She smiles proud and begins to go from bar to bar, swinging with much more strength that she appears to have on her wiry frame. My heart soars as she conquers every one of them and I think, This is what God made us for—for keeping our eyes on the highest dream, and like the resiliency of a child, we will reach it.
Sometimes I think about it when I pass my empty easel in the garage.
It peeks at me speckled and lonely.
Sometimes I see it in the patio cracks, concrete crumbles that could be faces, mountains. I could dream a little more or just sweep it away.
For a small moment, I join my kids with the sidewalk chalk and hope I haven’t become too rusty because someday, Someday, I would love to pick up my paintbrush again.
A shadow on the brick fence would look lovely in acrylic, but that will have to wait, so I’ll snap its image for my memory album.
But I still think about that blank canvass in the garage, wondering what to do with a gift that, for now, waits in those in between places.
Is there something you love to do, but just can’t right now? I LOVE art, so feel free to share your gifts and post your (family friendly) links in the comments.