God reminds me so often of who I was born to reflect. Who I should be. How I can be more like Him, and less like the sinful, prideful person my humanness entices me to be. He uses mornings like this, with the crisp morning air and the sun grazing our windows, illuminating the dining room from where I write.
My eight-year-old son Ian is an artist. He loves to draw, paint, build, scream, and create stories. He is a witty, intelligent, soft-spoken child who is painfully shy, but funny beyond words to those he allows into his world.
As he sat at the table this morning using his toy dragon and the light from our chandelier to cast shadows on his paper, he asked, “Mommy, does this look like the shadow of my dragon?” It was a simple question. One most kids would ask to receive praise or get attention. But not my son. He was asking because he was curious, and really wanted to know if I understood the intention of his art.
In that moment I realized this: I love giving praise and rewards to my humble children.
I love that they don’t seek attention. I love that they don’t brag (except in the natural sibling rivalry way), and that they perceive others on the same level. I love lifting them up and praising their accomplishments and seeing the inward satisfaction that comes from unsolicited praise.
Ian’s inward desire in that moment was to create art. He was using his gift, doing his passion, and enjoying his quiet morning.
It was a humbling moment. Realizing my son was so far ahead of me. In all my endeavors, I have the deep-down desire to receive praise. To do things perfectly and be recognized.
But that isn’t what Christ wants from me. He wants me to go about my business, doing his work, and giving all my efforts to whatever I’m doing simply because He has given me that ability.
…and that’s all I have to say about that.
God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble. ~James 4:6