Tears In My Wallpaper

May 11, 2006
by Rosemary Hagedorn

My granddaughter, Sierra, now six years old, came to visit her grandpa and grandma during the Christmas holidays.

"Magga," (her name for Grandma) "would you come to the bathroom with me?" she asked me. "Of course, I will," I answered.

When we reached the bathroom, she quietly looked around, and then apologized for breaking one of the dangling light bulbs in front of our mirror. This incident had happened over four years before. At that time, her mother had sat her on the counter to wash her. Curious about the dangling light just above her head, Sierra had reached out and given the bulb a little push. Before her mother realized what had happened, the light bulb had hit the mirror and shattered into a thousand little pieces. I was thankful that no one was hurt; a light bulb is replaceable.

I told her again that it had been an accident, that we had forgiven her, and that we now had two new dangling light fixtures to take their place.

"Magga, do you know why there are little rips in your wallpaper around the toilet seat?" Sierra asked me. "I think it is because the wallpaper is getting old," I answered.

She smiled and gently said, "When I come to your house, I always put a little rip into the wallpaper so I can mark how many times I came to visit your house."

I thought about the importance she placed on marking her visits to grandma and grandpa's house. I wonder: in the same way, are we excited and eager to visit God's house? Does the visitation become mundane and ritualistic, or is it exciting and welcoming?

One day, I will be remodelling our bathroom, and the little rips and tears in the wallpaper will disappear, but the memory of a little girl's loving words will never vanish.

Jeremiah 31:34 – "And they shall not teach again, each man his neighbour and each man his brother, saying, 'Know the Lord,' for they shall all know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them," declares the Lord, "for I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more." (NASB)

Prayer: Lord, You use each and every one of us as instruments to convey Your message of love which is to be shared, learned, and adhered to. Sometimes, You use the very young to teach the old, and the old to teach the young. Refresh us and ignite in us a fire so that we become excited, yet once again, to talk and visit with You. Amen.

About the author:

Rosemary Hagedorn <rosyhagedorn@gmail.com>
Penetanguishene, Ontario, Canada

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