I remember watching my toddlers cruise along the relative safety of the couch. Standing on unsturdy and pudgy little legs, they got the feel for walking while holding on to something big and soft.
When it came time to walk away from the couch, to take those first steps, a look that expressed both fear and delight covered their round little faces. First steps were often short – to me, to the coffee table, to another chair, to a sibling, to their father.
This time of life was one we called “The Bump-a-Day Club.” My children often bore head bruises, arm bruises, leg bruises, scrapes, and cuts. Learning to walk is not without risks and hurts.
But, oh, the vistas that open to the one who can walk upright without the aid of a couch! There were Christmas trees to pull over and ever higher heights to which they could climb.
I never did a bang-up job of child-proofing my home, as my children’s little bodies would attest to.
But they learned. And they walked. And they ran. And they climbed and swam and biked. They did all those wonderful things that children are supposed to do, all because they let go of the safety of the couch. All because they were willing to join the Bump-a-Day Club.
A friend of mine posted yesterday about a major life change her family was entering.
It wasn’t the life change that comes from a broken and dying world. Another friend of ours is going through that. His wife of over thirty years abruptly left and moved in with someone else. That’s a broken world. My brother is celebrating his 55th birthday with chemotherapy and radiation treatments. That’s a dying world.
My friend and her family are taken some new steps. This will be an exciting new vista that is opening for them. It’s not without some pain. It isn’t called the Bump-a-Day Club for nothing.
I’m sure their hearts are filled with both fear and delight.
Learning to walk is a scary and dangerous thing, but, to quote Dr. Seuss, “oh, the places you’ll go!”
I love to picture the heavenly Father, watching them take that first step, delighted with His children, and excited for the new adventures they will enjoy.
And when they bump their heads or arms or legs or hearts, He’ll gather them gently in His arms, just like we do with our toddlers. He’ll hug them and hold them, and then let them try again.