When I had finished my first year of college, I decided to take a road trip. I loaded my then 83 year old grandmother and then 13 year old brother in the car and we took off to West Virginia to satisfy two strong cravings of mine- one for a road trip and one for some whitewater rafting action.
I rafted the New River alone while my grandmother and brother patiently waited at the hotel (ok, my brother wasn't patient at all...he basically hated me by the time I got back since I had to use our only car to get to the river). About ten hours after leaving them, I returned with a video of the river trip. I wanted them to see the awesome time I'd had since they couldn't be there with me. I also wanted to show the cute guy I was dating how cool I was. I mean, who takes on Class IV and V rapids without a buddy?! THIS girl! (PS - that cute guy is now my husband...I totally knew he couldn't resist me after that!)
After watching the video, I asked my then-boyfriend/now-husband what his favorite part was. Was it when we took on "Dudley's Dip" with ease while the other boat flipped? No?
Was it when I jumped off "Jump Rock" and screamed, "God Bless Texas!" as I flew to the water? No?
He said that by far, his favorite part was when the camera man would show close ups of me before a rapid. He loved how my face would be stoic through the calmer waters and as soon as I could see the splashes of the rapid, I got a huge smile on my face and immediately started laughing. It's true. For whatever reason, I crack up when the scary parts of adventures come. I think roller coasters get me laughing the most. On the up-hill ride before a drop, you'd think Jerry Seinfeld was in mid-set in the seat behind me.
Fast forward eight years and I now have a toddler...a toddler who outwardly looks nothing like me. Almost to the man, when meeting my son, everyone says, "He looks just like Tim!" Great. I do all the baby-carrying, laboring, pushing, and using my body parts as feeding mechanisms and the kid looks nothing like me? Fair.
Over Memorial Day weekend, we went swimming at my parents' house. My son loves water and is a little too brave for his own good. Toward the end of our swim-time, I sat my son on the step so my arms could get a little break. I was standing right in front of him, so he decided to reach for me. He slid off the step, went under, and I quickly picked him back up and put him on the step. Well, he loved that and decided to do it over and over again. I would place him on the step and he would scoot forward, rocking from one tiny cheek to the other until he got to the edge. At the edge of the step, a huge smile would cover his face and he would erupt with laughter from the time his little booty left the step until he was under water.
He wasn't born looking like me, no. But I see sweet reflections of me in him. And I love them. I will forever remember his little face as he worked so hard to get to the edge, knowing something exciting was waiting for him. I'll always be able to picture his face light up as the adventure closed in, and the giggle that filled the air as he took it on, full-steam ahead. It's a reflection of me. And I cherish it.
And it made me think.
I wasn't born looking like Christ either. But I'm sure it gives him great joy when He sees small reflections of himself in Me. And just like the reflections of myself will become more and more common in my son as he ages and spends time with me, I hope the Lord sees more and more of Himself in me as I grow and spend more and more time with Him.
And I hope those are reflections my son sees as well. Those will be the ones that really matter.