I HEARD God Today

On his Troubadour album, George Strait recorded the unbelievably touching “I Saw God Today” about literally seeing the face of God in an otherwise normal, mundane setting. The whole premise of the song is about how the birth of a child can open eyes to a whole new vision of the world. Boy, Mr. Strait hit the nail on the head on that one.

Having kids also opens your mouth to words you never thought yourself capable of saying, but that is for another column.

I know my kids are miracles, each one of them. After all, we were not supposed to have any. At all. And here we are with four of them!

Gifts from God. (Gag gifts, in many instances, but gifts nonetheless. Our great Creator has shown me that karma comes in many forms, not the least of which is a son or daughter, and my own mother and father have shown great restraint in not shouting out on many occasions, “Paybacks are hell, ain’t they?”)

Anyway, I surely can appreciate the sentiment in the aforementioned song. However, with my own children, I believe a more appropriate recording would be “I heard God Today”. I am constantly amazed by the pearls of wisdom—and, of course, the knee-slapping hilarity—that my Fab Four are able to conjure up regarding their own personal walk with Christ.


The Elder, The Ponderer
My great thinker is my oldest, Nash. We should have named him Webster, instead. He’s got a vocabulary that would make most Congressmen jealous, particularly since he typically knows the right context to use. Unfortunately, some of the more innocuous euphemisms tend to trip him up.

About two weeks ago, Nash came home in a less-than-joyful mood. (Were he in high school, I might have dismissed it. But second grade?) I didn’t broach the subject until dinner, when I finally asked him what was wrong. All he said was that he wanted to pray for a friend of his at school who had died that day. I nearly fell over. Why had we not received a note from the school? Was there something in the newspaper?

He continued to mope around all that evening and the next day. At the table the next evening, I thought it pertinent to find out a little more about what happened. “And how did you find out that he died, pal?” I inquired.

“Well, Daddeaux, my teacher told me he was playing on the playground and that he just passed out. The ambulance came and took him away.”

“So he died at the hospital?” I probed.

“No, Daddeaux,” Nash replied impatiently. “I just told you. He passed out on the playground.”

I paused for a moment, trying not to crack an obvious smile. “Nash,” I said, “you do know that ‘passed out’ means that someone kind of goes to sleep, right? ‘Passed away’ means to have died.”

He looked at me for a moment, then his eyes got wide. “So that’s why I saw that kid today that looked so much like my friend! I was scared to go talk to him!”

The Girl, The Princess
My only daughter Bliss is not spoiled. I would prefer to say she is well-attended by just about everyone in her life—grandparents, brothers, and of course her mother and me. She can be rather obstinate, but Bliss most assuredly has a softer side that will melt the coldest heart when it reveals itself.

Last year, my parents came to the very sad decision to put down their 15-year-old Miniature Pinscher, Peanut. It was heartbreaking for all of us, obviously, but it took on a whole new dimension as we tried to come up with a way to tell the kids about what had happened. To Bliss, my mother explained, “Peanut went to live with Jesus.” No questions from the little princess. Issue resolved, or so we thought.

On our traditional Thanksgiving family vacation, we visited a church adorned with many stained-glass windows depicting various scenes from the life of Christ. As the congregation sat quietly during a moment of silence, Bliss leaned over and “whispered” loudly to my mother, “Grandma, I see Jesus everywhere! Where Peanut?”

Ever have those moments where you laugh and cry all at once?

The Baby, The Legacy
Less than a year after the birth of my baby, Duff Henry, the namesake of his middle name passed away after a battle with Alzheimer’s. Baby Duff has carried on Henry Dale Edgar’s quiet legacy. He looks like his grandfather, for sure, but he moves like him and carries on in all things with no complaint, just like Henry Dale. It is almost as if God, as he was closing the book on my father-in-law’s earthly life, picked the sweetest fruits of Henry Dale’s spirit and placed them on the heart of Duffy.

Duffy has been by far the easiest of our children, and there are times that I can only imagine that the Lord Himself is steering Duffy’s actions. That would be the only explanation for how touching that little boy can be at times.

Recently, Duffy had gone all day without a nap. Other than a few extra eye rubs throughout the day, you never would have known. We just let him play in his room, none the wiser.

At some point, however, Duffy decided that perhaps we had forgotten that he needed to rest. Out he emerged from his room, holding his bear, clutching his blanket, and gnawing furiously on his pacifier. “Night-night!” he screamed in toddler talk that needed no interpretation. Needless to say, we had no trouble getting him to go to sleep that evening!

The Middle Boy, The Philosopher
I think when God was formulating the recipe that ultimately became my second son Quaid, he looked down on Brandy and me and said, “OK, here you go. I’m going to pack the energy of a nuclear meltdown into a little boy’s body. Just for giggles, I am going to make this kid have a total lack of control for what his hands do. That will drive you utterly nuts. But to keep you from going crazy and becoming Prozac addicts, I’m going to give him an understanding of the biblical and spiritual worlds that most televangelists would envy. Likewise, I’m going to instill in him a physical need to be hugged at least fifty times a day, with at least five of those coming in the two minutes prior to going to bed. You’re going to want to scream at times, and moments later, you’ll want to pick him up and love him to death. Enjoy.”

For whatever reason, Quaid can absorb and interpret stories and lessons from the Bible brilliantly. Moreover, his kindergarten innocence makes for some of the most touching encounters. Two anecdotes come to mind.

Idolizing his older brother can sometimes get Quaid into a little trouble. One Saturday, the two boys supported one another in watching a Discovery Kids show about haunted houses. Bedtime that evening was not a pleasant experience.

About the third time I walked into his room in response to his blood-curdling screams, I told Quaid that he had no need to fear of any ghosts, because he knew the greatest “ghost” of all, the Holy Ghost. He pondered that rationale for a moment before responding.

“Daddeaux, I love the Holy Ghost. I do. But I don’t want it sitting in here with me in the dark! If it wants to watch me, it can watch from the window!”

Just this weekend, I made poboy sandwiches for dinner one afternoon. As Quaid was about to bite into his, he paused and looked at me. “You know what this is, Daddeaux? It’s the body of Jesus Christ!” (We have allowed our kids to accompany us to the altar during Holy Communion, and I guess the bread looked somewhat familiar.)

As he resumed his bite, Quaid stopped again as he noticed a darkened dimple in his sandwich bread. “Oh, look!” he exclaimed. “I got His eye!”


I am not going to lie. My children have an innate ability to bring out my worst at times. But then again, if they didn’t do that every now and then, I probably would not appreciate how angelic they can be.

I am blessed beyond comprehension.

I heard God today.


  1. Goodness, Jeff...I laughed, I cried--the best kind of "read." You've outdone yourself, again. You are a blessed craftman of the word. Thanks for sharing it with us.

  2. What a great post! Thanks for the glimpse into your little ones' lives.


Post a Comment

Popular Posts