Letting Go

Yesterday after church, Russell did the same thing he has done every Sunday after church for the last few weeks. He jumped off three steps into his father’s arms. But today, it was different. Today, he started his run from as far back on the deck as he possibly could, and ran with all of his might, full speed ahead. He was holding his mask in his left hand (we had been wearing them at church), and as he jumped in the air, he flung his mask out of his hand and it went flying as his smile continued to spread all the way across his face in the very definition of beaming. And thanks to Hudson’s request, we have the moment captured in slow motion. (See video on my facebook or instagram. It won’t let me post the slow motion video here.)

When Clive first encouraged Russell to jump off these steps into his arms, Russell was tentative and afraid, and wasn’t even sure if he wanted to. He more fell off the steps into his dad’s arms, rather than jumping. He giggled, but you could still feel and see the fear coming through.

Yesterday, when he jumped, true joy and trust had overtaken fear. If there was any fear in him, there was no evidence of it. So much so, that he was happy to throw away anything else in his hands that might hinder truly experiencing the full joy of the moment of being caught by his father. It immediately spoke to my heart about the love of our Heavenly Father and how nothing brings Him more joy than when we, His little ones, will run, full speed ahead, throwing off anything that hinders, to experience the joy of being caught and hugged and love by the One we have put our trust in.

Russell not only started to believe that his dad would catch him, he started to believe that his dad would catch him every time, no matter what. No matter how fast he ran, no matter how high he jumped, no matter what he was carrying in his hands.

There are two things I notice and I love as I watch Clive in the video. Clive has his eyes completely focused on Russell. He is watching every step and positioning himself to be at just the right place to catch him. He isn’t telling Russell to slow down, take off his flip flops, move to the left or right, or wait. He is ready and his focus is on doing what he needs to do to make sure that Russell will be absolutely safe and secure and will experience the joy of the jump without fear. And when Russell jumps, he catches him, and Clive lets the weight of Russell move his own body back in a swinging motion that would have made it perfectly easy to continue in that natural motion and set him down. But he doesn’t set him down. He lifts him up closer into him and carries him.

The moment didn’t end with the trusting jump. It continued after the jump. They were close and laughing and experiencing the joy of that moment together after it was over. It was another step of trusting, letting go of fear, and jumping into joy and love. And they experienced all that it meant together. No words were needed, but those few seconds were no small thing.

They would know this in their souls, even if not consciously thought or expressed, because we were created to know these moments in the deepest part of our hearts, where words are less important than the knowing. Because these every day moments are there to point us to the love of our Father. It’s in the deepest part of who we are even when we don’t know it’s Him. We might not always know it, but He does. And He won’t stop communicating His love to us in our every day moments of life.

And He keeps whispering to us. Let it go. Trust Me. Run to Me. Jump into My arms with total abandon. I WILL catch you. And you will experience My joy, My love, and My delight in you. I promise that it will make everything you are holding on to pale in comparison. You were made to live without fear. You were made to live trusting in Me alone. I am here, shifting from left to right, wherever you need Me me to be, to safely catch you, knowing that you are secure, not just in My catch, but in the jumping.

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