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Seeing the World with Sylas

It’s already springtime in Charlotte and so I took little Sylas out for a stroll. He learned to walk about four weeks ago. Imagine if a 1 ½-year-old walked out of his house and went on his own. That’s how I wanted him to feel. Except, I would be there to redirect him if needed. No coaxing, no hand-holding. This was his own excursion.

I let him wander. Grandmother hen hovered only two to five steps behind him. This was the first time he was free to go wherever his heart desired in the wide, open world. Just watching him was the greatest joy. A thought occurred to me: This is what God does with us every day.

Sy never stopped moving except when he came upon something he couldn’t pass by. First stop: purple and yellow pansies in a flowerbed close to the corner. He stopped, squatted, and touched them gently with his fingers. Then he looked straight up. Way above his head, pink flowering tree branches spread out, boughs full of blooming clusters, swaying in the warm breeze. He gazed at them until I lifted him up. Reaching up, he touched the flowers with kind, playful, fingers. I don’t believe he had ever seen a real flower close up. I saw such an expression of wonder on his face; it was so touching. I wish I could be like him and see God’s wonders as if for the first time.  God must wish this, too.

We came to a curb at the end of a sidewalk. I patiently watched him sit down, turn around, and manage it going backwards. I could have helped him in one swift movement, but it seemed important to let him do it himself. At this thought, I felt God smiling.

Next, we came across a giant toy car parked along the sidewalk. Shiny and bright yellow, it looked new. It was a VW Beetle. (I wish I had one.)  The way he reacted at his first sight of it was adorable. I felt sure this was more amazing to Sylas than the flowers. He maneuvered himself down the curb and stepped up to the car’s back tail light. He pushed it repeatedly with his index finger. He knew it should do something. Next, he felt the tires. The rubber was different than he expected. He looked closely. He felt the grooves and the outside roundness of the tire. He touched the ornate hubcap. Then he toddled around to the back of the car again and he began pushing against the fender. Alas, even after a bit of effort, it was still a no-go. The car wouldn’t budge. Next, he walked around the vehicle on the street side, not lifting his hand from it until he reached the front. He backed up a little to take in the view of the entire car.

I was so enamored by him while watching all of this unfold. I know how Sylas feels about cars. They are his favorite toys. He likes to poke at their undersides with pens that look like his daddy’s small screwdriver. He makes the cars go vroom with his voice. And, if it has batteries, he’s non-tiring in chasing after it. Until today, he didn’t know a car could be so gigantic. It was a discovery he made for himself.

When he was ready, Sylas took to roaming down the middle of the quiet street. I gently guided him to the safety of the sidewalk and we headed home, although I had to carry him for the last stretch.  Isn’t this a parable of how it is with God and each of us?

1 Comment

  1. Wayne Cooper
    Feb 28, 2017

    So much for Sy to discover and experience in a walk to the curb.

    Yes, i think it is a rather apt parable of how it is with God and us.