Estimated reading time: 2 minute(s)
After seeing her Mom crying while listening to the Beauty Will Rise album in the van yesterday, Kirstie seemed to be the most affected by the story of a five year old girl going to heaven. (Perhaps because she is also five years old herself?)
She told me about it when they got home, and kept bringing it up. So we got to chat about the strange paradox of the joy of heaven and the sorrow of death, the reality of where our “home” is and the beauty of living in a broken world that Jesus walks through with us. (Good stuff about that paradox in 2 Corinthians 5.)
It was so interesting to see the seriousness in her face as we talked about these things. As she talked about a little girl dying. As we thought ahead to the time when both of us will go home to heaven, eventually. She said, “But you’ll always be my Dad. Even when you’re a Grandpa, you’ll be my Dad.” She added later, “And I’ll always be 5, or 6, or 7.” 🙂 I assured her that she would grow up, and that was a good thing.
And I also hugged her and assured her that I’ll always be her Dad.
Even our three year old got in on the serious discussions, relaying to me the story of Maria Chapman, how she had died and gone home to heaven. It was pretty interesting how the new album we were listening to sparked many thoughts and discussions throughout the day. And why not? It is a strange part of life. Death, seeming like an end from behind this door, but our confidence that it is a beginning … happy and sad all at once. How can that be?
Who knows what the future holds. On the album, Beauty Will Rise, the song “February 20th” is about that day in 2008 when Maria was asking about heaven, and said she wanted to go there. A line from the song says, “But we could never have imagined she’d be going there so soon.” We never know. All we know is that Jesus said he would never leave us, and that when we die here, we will be with him. For real.
For now, the events of the last day or so have made me notice when my kids need me. I may be doing something, feeling busy… but I can do that later.
How special each of my kids are to me. How special Jen is to me. That is what matters. Now, and forever.
Thanks Steven, for the reminder.