(For those of you tired of all the death talk, here’s some reflections on what my daughter can teach me about being holy.)
Make me like my daughter.
Help me to live in the moment, entirely trusting and dependent on You.
Help me to be transparent and humble in telling You what I need.
When I am sitting in a pile of my own mess, help me to tell You. Loudly.
Help me to know that You are probably more amused at my weakness than angry. Help me to hear Your laughter and encouragement when I am dirty and ashamed.
Help me to rejoice when You clean me, to soak in the warmth and splash my hands and feet in the pool of Your waters.
When I am hungry for Your grace, don’t let me be satisfied until I get it, no matter what little tricks might be available to comfort or distract me.
When it is time to drink in that grace, help me be focused and content.
Help me to spit that grace up on anyone around me. I know we will all be shocked by how far my spit-up can go.
Help me to smile at You every day. I know now how much joy it can bring a father’s heart.
Give me the humility to want to be held in Your arms.
When I don’t sense you nearby, help me to call out until You come nearer. But also give me the confidence to know that you are probably in the next room, doing something that needs to be done for my happiness.
Help me to turn and look every time I hear my Mother’s voice, to know that her words are a sign of the love I am washed in daily, to know that it is she and You who are the source of all good things.
Help me to push and strain and struggle when you let me lie uncomfortably, face-down. Help me to realize that while it is hard, it is necessary if I ever want to walk upright with You.
When I am cold and scared in the dark of night, help me call out to You. And even if you don’t turn the light on, help me realize it’s because there is a bigger picture outside of me and other people who need to be considered. Give me the confidence to know that You will take care of me without disturbing their peace. Help me be satisfied with the strength of Your arms, the warmth of Your chest, the rhythm of Your sway.
Help me to know that I need to grow every day if I want to have fullness of life. Help me to know I cannot do that without You or my Mother.
Help me to remember that separation from You and my Mother means death, and I should fear it more than anything.
Make me innocent, like she is.
Make me pure, like she is.
Make me simple, like she is.
Make me dependent, like she is.
And please protect my wife and child, and ensure that the three of us rest forever with You in Heaven some day.