Through my glasses, I looked hard at her. "Brielle, I like talking with you," I said. "You are a very good listener, and you say very interesting things and ask very good questions and are curious. When you get older, will you still sit down and talk with me? Maybe we can just sit down with a cup of tea and talk? Because you are one of my very favorite people to talk to."
"OK," she said. She'd turned around and begun to gaze into my eyes, beatific, amused and smiling. I thought for sure this little speech had hit home.
I was having a moment. (One too many screenings of Mamma Mia in my house this Christmas, probably.)
And then she said:
"I can see myself in your eyes. Whoever is looking at you can see yourself--can see themself--in your eyes."
Naturally, while I was high on my moment of heart connection with my firstborn, she was entertaining herself checking out her reflection in my glasses.
Any teacher knows the feeling. You're on a roll, breaking it down to receptive little souls in ways that nearly bring a quiver to your voice. You expect an "Amen" any second now. A hand goes up. It must be the profound question you'd hoped to inspire. The child asks, "Can I go to the bathroom?"
Her non sequitur got me thinking, nonetheless. Its implications left me asking myself a lot of questions at least as important as, "Can I use the john?" Like these:
- When she looks at me, how well am I doing at communicating an image of her anything like what God sees when He looks at her?
- How are the lenses I've crafted to see my world enhancing or distorting the world she sees, especially the world within herself?
- When was the last time I looked into my Heavenly Father's eyes to see a truer reflection of who I really am?
- How will I train her to value this heavenly reflection, this divine self-image, this God's-eye-view of her--above all others?