I think it seems abundantly clear that of the many times we see Jesus showing value for someone that others in His day ignored, set aside, or disregarded, that Jesus loved and valued children.
I see it in Luke 18:17 when Jesus speaks about how a child receives the kingdom of God models how adults should as well. I see it again in Matthew 19:14 when His disciples appeared to be keeping the children from running to Him. Of course there are even more examples than two. In each case, His words convey value for children and also imply that children trust and believe far more easily than adults often do.
Perhaps it was also because children often seem to have an innate sense of whether a person is safe or trustworthy. I see how even an infant responds to someone who feels comfortable when holding him or her and those who do not. The infant cannot seem to relax if the person holding them is not sure of themselves and feeling ill at ease.
As I write this, I am seeing another story of the faith of a child unfold in front of my eyes.
Her name is Sydney and she is our 13-year-old granddaughter. If you would be in her presence for even a short time, you would discover her sharp wit, her no nonsense attitude and her great love for all animals, but especially birds.
You would discover her skill playing the violin and her entrance into the world of karate to connect with her older brother, 19, on a new level since he has entered college and no longer lives at home nine months of the year. You would see her hijinks with her younger brother, Nathan, 11, as they invented new ways to challenge each other and stir up new ways to keep everyone on their toes. You might even see her with her older sister, 15, as they sorted out the new Jamberry nail wrap styles to adorn their fingers and toes.
Her grandpa would tell you to be careful if she challenges you to a checker game because she takes no prisoners and he rarely succeeds in beating her in a game.
I would tell you she loves to have her back scratched or rubbed and loves snuggling in bed before she goes to sleep while I tell her stories of when I was a young girl growing up.
All of these things and more would be true, but today I want to tell you about her faith and the testimony it has been to those of us around her.
A few months ago, she was diagnosed with a severe thoracic scoliosis curve that would require major spinal surgery. Doctors’ visits and consultations allowed her to hear the straight facts about what that would mean for her. She learned about the six-hour surgery, the pain, the spinal fusion, the limitations, and the long recovery period and more. She learned about bars, screws, and donating a pint of her own blood as well.
Each part of it gave her parents and her grandparents pause. Two of her siblings welled up in tears at the news out of the empathy they felt for her. As we were catching our breath with each detail, Sydney’s response grabbed our attention for the clear signal it gave for her faith.
Sydney was clear-sighted and confident in the Lord. She spoke of how other family members had been faced with big things, hard things, and challenges and then said, “If you want to see God DO big things, you have to have circumstances which require big things. Won’t it be great to see how God meets each big thing between now and the weeks following surgery.”
To this point, she has not expressed fear and seems to see that as completely illogical. “Why would I be afraid if God’s going to be there with me?”
This week she has started a series of seven appointments leading up to surgery on July 13. In each one, she will take in more information for procedures and experiences for which she has no frame of reference, but faces with an assurance in the Lord whom she trusts and follows, the One who lives in her heart.
We watch and listen, humbled by her confidence and assurance as we face our own anxious thoughts and plan for what she will need from each one of us as she goes through this process.
We also celebrate what we see of her sweet, but tough relationship with the Lord. How grateful we are for the response of her heart to His nudge.
I could easily talk about either of our children or our other five grandchildren and evidences of God’s grace and faith in them on their own walks with Him, but for this post I would give space to Sydney and ask that you pray for her as well as all of us as we reach out to the hem of the Lord’s garment seeking His healing during the weeks ahead.
“Now faith is the evidence of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1 ESV
32 thoughts on “The Faith of a Child”
I can’t even imagine the blessing it is for you to see your granddaughter living out her faith in such a nitty-gritty way. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to be encouraged by her story, and for the privilege of praying for her and for those who love her. I’m glad you shared this with us at Grace & Truth!
Thanks so much, Jennifer! I will likely share more as the story unfolds. The Lord is up to something in her life to grant her this level of faith!
My, my! I love Sydney’s words: “If you want to see God DO big things, you have to have circumstances which require big things.”
I am confident that God will honor her faith, as He always does the faith of those who believe in Him. Does it always work out the way we want? No, but it always ends up being for good. You will look back at this experience and see fruit from it.
Love and prayers to you and yours. (Love her picture – what a cutie!)
I believe you are right! He will honor the spiritual gift of faith He has placed within her and use it for His glory and testimony. Thanks for your love and prayers. I will certainly share of His work in this in the weeks ahead. Love and blessings, my friend.
Pam, I know of the surgery you speak of. My youngest daughter at age 8 had rods put in her back due to her curve caused by her spina bifida. I remember very well what those days and then weeks brought to her and our family. We trusted in the Lord as well and it was not without a few complications in her circumstances, but even through those, she prevailed and all was well in the end. He has this!
Thanks so much for sharing here and your loving support!
oops – Forgot to say we are neighbors at #ThoughtProvokingThursday
Pam – I will be praying for your beautiful precious granddaughter and your family as the Lord brings her and you to mind. I love how she has such BIG faith to believe God for the BIG and small things! She is one BRAVE little girl, and what an incredible blessing to your family. Our God is Big & Mighty and nothing is to hard for Him! May God give you Peace and Big Faith in this season too.
Amen, Debbie! Your prayers will be appreciated because I know her faith will be tested in the weeks ahead. She has no frame of reference for all that will be happening to her (even though she has been given the facts) and that is a mercy right now!
From the mouths of babes…Sydney has me shaking my head with a smile. Get ’em girl! I know you must be so proud to watch her lay her life down before God’s feet. Thank you so much for sharing this story. I’m inspired!
Thanks, Meg! You understand my sentiments clearly! I will expect to do some sequels as we walk through this season.