I love Alex. With her around I know that I will always have enough inspiration and lunacy in my life. Every night we read. Or rather I read while she lays in her bed and listens. Last night we finished the latest Allie Finkle novel so tonight the story was up in the air. "What do you want to read?" Alex studied the shelves. She pulled out several books of bible stories for young children. Ones we haven't read from since her preschool days. She wanted to hear the story of Jonah and the Whale.
Words can not adequately describe how truly random this event was. We never read bible stories. I consider myself a spiritual person, but I don't pretend to be religious. Before I could suggest something more suitable for bed time, Alex had grabbed an actual bible and opened it to the book of Jonah. "Read this story." And so I did.
I skipped the boring parts, the whole tale is just a handful of chapters long so there wasn't much else to read. Jonah was told to go to Nineveh to tell the people there they were doing bad things and they needed to repent and turn to God. He didn't want to go. He was afraid the people wouldn't listen. That they would make fun of him. He jumped on a boat instead and there he meet the whale. I guess that's just tough love. God's way of forcing Jonah to do what he was told. I never liked the story when I was kid. To me it made God seem like a jerk. So what if Jonah didn't want to go to Nineveh. There had to be thousands of other people God could have picked on. Why did he have to harass Jonah?
As I read the story tonight, Alex laid in her bed and listened. When I was done I closed the bible and gave Alex a hug. Then she looked at me with her beautiful eyes that always remind me of her father and said,
"You know, that's the problem. The point of the whole thing is to listen to your heart and do what God wants, but there are so many other voices going on in my head that sometimes, its just hard to hear."
This from the 10 year old girl who jumped up from the dinner table to dance the shimmy. Who rides her scooter from one room to the next in our tiny 2 bedroom apartment. With such pre-adolescence going on around you its hard to imagine this ball of energy hears anything at all.