originally posted in December 2011.
Sometimes we read. We hug and kiss. And we pray. Always, we pray. But I don’t often hold them and rock them and sing to them as I did when they were smaller.
But last night I did. I sang You Are My Sunshine and Jesus Loves Me.
And then I started in on Te-ell me why the stars do shine. Tell me why the ivy twines. Tell me why the ocean’s blue. And I will tell you just why I love you.
Jackson leaned in closer against me and started humming along, singing a word every line or two. As I finished, I do be-lee-eve that God above created you for me to love. He picked you out from all the rest. Because God made you, I lo-ove you best, Jackson sighed and smiled up at me.
My heart knows that song, but my brain doesn’t know all the words, he said.
Tears sprang to my eyes. All the nights of holding a baby Jackson, whisper-singing that song to his tiny ears. All the nights of standing over a crib, patting his back, hushing his cries with this song. The naptimes I held his chubby toddler body and sang about God making the blue ocean and the climbing, twining ivy. The nights I cuddled in next to his preschool body, worn out from running and climbing and playing with his brothers, and I sang this song. All of that. All of it settled its way into his heart.
My heart knows that song, but my brain doesn’t know all the words.
Sometimes I feel that way about God. My heart, my soul responds to his song, but my brain doesn’t know all the words.
I see a beautiful sunset or the shadow of birds flying over a lake. I watch ducks bobbing along on the choppy water and feel the wind tickling my hair around my red cheeks. I sense His protection as that 18-wheeler swerves back into his own lane and the accident is narrowly averted. I sing that old hymn asking Him to bind my wandering heart to Him. I read a Psalm reminding me that I cannot flee from the Lord. I taste a juicy clementine. I see the redbuds blooming on the mountainside. I wake to my children’s giggles that turn to roaring laughter.
And my heart leans in closer to Him. Snuggles up against His side. And I hum along, unable to put it all in words.
My brain may not comprehend it all. I can’t explain it all in logical, scientific words. I can’t even explain it all in long, multisyllabic theological words.
But my heart knows this song. My whole life, my Father has been singing over me. And His song has settled its way deep into my heart.
Some days or weeks or months, I rush about or busy myself or go my own way. I don’t slow down and take time to sit with Him and listen to Him or maybe I even avoid Him, preferring to do my own thing for a while.
But when I finally do stop and listen, my heart sighs and leans in to the familiar tune. My heart knows that song.
Do you hear it? Does your heart respond? Do you lean in a little bit closer to Him?