Neil hit the “pause” on the TV as Judah scurried into our bedroom.
“Whatcha’ need, Bubba?” Neil pulled back the sheets ready to assist him back to bed.
“Hang on, babe. He’s after something.” Our eyes locked onto him like a heat-sensing missile as he reached for my fabric scissors. Curiosity struck a nerve causing my breathing to quicken. “Why does he need my scissors?” I asked half to myself and half to my husband as he pulled back the blankets the rest of the way.
Images of Judah “needing” scissors flashed through my head.
- …when he wants to cut the hose because water leaks through the sides
- …when he wants to experiment popping balloons
- …when he needs to cut an unwanted piece of string on his clothes…
What could he possibly need scissors for at 10:00 at night?
I remained under the covers while Neil rushed after Judah. Seconds later, the silence broke with my husband’s angry voice. I waited until Neil returned. His expression communicated all but details: Judah was in trouble…again.
“What did he do?”
“He pulled the ceiling fan out of the ceiling.” Repressed anger boiled under a will to control his emotion.
“He what?!” Alarm imprinted on his face made me sit up in bed. By the time I pulled my blankets back, Neil was gone again, and I could hear his exacerbated voice from Judah’s room. This time I wasted no time. I stood at the edge of Judah’s bed staring at the dangling ceiling fan with my jaw dropped. Neil continued lecturing. Evidently, Neil caught Judah messing with the fan for the second time. Judah didn’t move. Couldn’t blame him. I’d never seen Neil so mad.
Several minutes later after fixing the fan to a “safe” place, Neil was kissing Judah’s face assuring him of his unconditional love. “I love you so much that I get angry when you put yourself in danger. What you did was dangerous. That’s why you have to listen. I always love you, even when I’m mad.”
Judah nestled his cheek next to his dad’s, as he so often does.
Hours later, the dark house fell silent. As the events of the evening replayed on the movie screen in my head, a parallel story played alongside.
Lord, how often have You warned me against that which is dangerous? I’ve chosen to do what I want, ignorant of impending danger. And You rescue me before danger’s guillotine falls. I lie perfectly still feeling Your scolding discipline. Sometimes I see the danger in my rear view mirror. Other times, I don’t see it until I’m further down the road. you always protect me. And always, In the next moment, Your love surrounds me, assuring me of Your boundless, limitless love.
Thank You, Lord.