Life is all about how you perceive things. Take a dandelion; is it a weed or a flower? Some will shout out it is a weed, while others see a burst of sunshine, sent to brighten your day, and will call it a flower. I for one believe it is a flower. When I was a little girl, I loved picking dandelions. They never lasted long but there was great joy in handing my bouquet of love to my Mother. Maybe it was because I could pick as many as I wanted and never was yelled at for picking them all. After the delightful ball of angels replaced the flower, I remember how much fun it was to blow the little angels all around, knowing that where they landed another dandelion would miraculously appear. Aww the sheer delight when a patch of dandelions were discovered, as if they had made their own special garden in the middle of nowhere. The wonders of childhood, how easy it was to see the beauty and not the weed, to embrace the world with such openness. How sad it is our perception becomes clouded as we grow older.
If only I could have kept the perception of a child, not only for flowers but also of a world filled with love. When singing “Jesus Loves Me”* filled my heart with joy. When there was no doubt the words were true, after all the Bible told me so. I stood up and sang the words straight from my heart every word sung with conviction and belief. I didn’t try to figure out why Jesus loved me, He just did. The simple faith of a child is the true example of unconditional faith. Somewhere along the road that simple faith became complicated. My perception changed. My heart says Jesus loves me, but my brain says how is that possible? He has seen my sins. He knows my thoughts. He has seen every time I slip back into the tidal wave of defeat. How is it possible that Jesus loves me?
After all, He knows the thoughts swirling through my mind on my two hour drive from work. Like the thoughts I have for that driver up ahead, who refused to let me in, just so they could be one car ahead. As I glanced out my window my heart is full with delight, for there alongside the road in the middle of DC is a beautiful patch of dandelions. A tiny burst of sunshine, sent to brighten the ride home. Once again my heart is filled with the feeling of being loved. “Jesus loves me still today, Walking with me on my way, Wanting as a friend to give Light and love to all who live.”*
Yes, Jesus loves me; He showers me with gifts every day; my children, grandchildren, friends and family, a magnificent sunrise and sunset, flowers and birds. My job and yes even that four-hour round trip drive each day to work and back. The whole truth of Jesus’ love is, “But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.(Romans 5:8 NIV)” He knew before He got on that cross, that I was a sinner, that I would have doubts about my unworthiness. Yet His word tells me over and over that His love is unconditional. His love will never change; it’s my perception that clouds the way. The perception of looking at love through my eyes and not the eyes of the Lord. So, with the simple faith of a child and the knowledge of an adult I will embrace the love that is freely given to all who except it, the undying love of Jesus. With that love comes freedom, for “What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?” (Romans 8:31 NIV).
I pray that you too will embrace the love of Jesus with the heart of a child.
Jesus Loves Me Bill & Gloria Gaither