We were both in my bathroom. Lilli was sitting in the dry bathtub playing with her My Little Pony purse and its contents, which included three bangle bracelets, a pretend makeup compact (or her “hiccup” as she calls it), a comb, and a talking magic wand (which, for the record, I think should be included in ALL purses for ALL persons, big or small). I was straightening up and getting ready for the day.
For reasons unknown, she really likes to play in our shower, too. It’s all glass, so I think she enjoys being in a “room” but still being able to see me. Who knows, though. She is, after all, almost three. She had loaded up the purse and moved from the tub into the shower, where she was having a lively conversation with her wand. I hated to break them up, but I was leaving the bathroom and that’s one location I don’t like to leave her alone.
“Lilli, Mimmie is done in here. I need you to come with me, please.”
“Just a minute, Mimmie.”
“No Lilli, I need you to come now, please.”
“Fine. (stamps foot…marches out)”
“You say ‘yes ma’am,’ Lilli.”
“Yes. MA’AM.” (we’re working on the sassy, but that’s not the point of this story)
“Honey, you need to get your purse out of the shower.”
“I want to leave it there.”
“What if Papa gets in to take a shower and doesn’t see it. It will get all wet and your wand won’t work anymore.”
(Looks up at me with big blue eyes and somber expression)
“Oh NO. THAT would be a PWOBLEM.”
A problem, indeed. Then she said this…
“Thank you, Mimmie, for telling me.”
When was the last time you thanked someone for telling you something you should’ve noticed yourself? I think we do it with simple things like leaving our car keys at the grocery checkout, or someone pointing out a tire going flat. But I’m talking about stuff that’s really important. Stuff like when we are going down a wrong life path, or getting too close in a relationship that is not good for us. In those instances, we are blinded by the circumstance itself and often don’t see the red flags and warning signs (or are simply ignoring them) until it’s too late. Do you have someone around you that would step up and tell you you’re headed in a wrong direction? More, would you welcome and thank them for it?
I’m grateful to have a husband who will do this, but I also have couple of girlfriends to whom I’ve given permission to yank me aside and tear my blinders off so I can actually see what’s happening. It’s no fun, but there is that somber moment of realization that is indisputable, a moment where I can finally look up and say…
Oh NO, that IS a PROBLEM.
Frankly, I’d much rather suffer a little embarrassment and rejoice over retrieving my dry purse, still intact, than have them surrounding me as I try to pick up all the soggy, ruined pieces.
Little children need grownups in their lives to spot the danger for them as they travel down life’s road. We’re really no different. If you don’t have any in your life, why don’t you recruit a couple of spotters yourself. Give them permission to call you out when you need it. I promise it’ll only sting a little, because, like a Mimmie to a little blue-eyed girl, it’ll all be done in the name of love.
“Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ.” Ephesians 4:15 NIV
“If someone falls into sin, forgivingly restore him, saving your critical comments for yourself. You might be needing forgiveness before the day’s out. Stoop down and reach out to those who are oppressed. Share their burdens, and so complete Christ’s law. If you think you are too good for that, you are badly deceived.” Galatians 6:1 MSG
“Be alert. If you see your friend going wrong, correct him. If he responds, forgive him. Even if it’s personal against you and repeated seven times through the day, and seven times he says, ‘I’m sorry, I won’t do it again,’ forgive him.” Luke 17:3 MSG