"What's wrong?" I ask, alarmed.
A sob escapes his lips. He takes a deep breath, "I read something I shouldn't have." Pause and sob. "I'm scared." Another sob.
I listen as The Stinker explains about the back of his Nate the Great book -- the part that tells about vampires and werewolves. And I realize this boy with a sensitive heart has been lying in his bed paralyzed with fear, lying with all the lights turned on, afraid to get out of bed because of what he fears could be true.
We talk about what's real and what is not. I speak truth, and he nods. He knows, but he's still scared. He has been blessed with my imagination. He can picture a man turned wolf, and it terrifies him. It's not rational; it just is.
I follow him to his room and slip under dinosaur sheets with him. He pulls my arm tighter around him and nestles in. My middle-who-was-the-baby-for-six-years. My squeezed one, wanting squeezed tighter. How long has it been since I've done this with him? "Too long," my mama heart sighs with guilt.
We pray together. I speak words of comfort over him:
Protect his heart and mind in Christ Jesus.
May your angels surround him.
You are a strong and mighty God.
Help him to not be afraid.
And I realize this is what I want. When my mind is running rampant with the fears of this world, when my heart is quaking from thoughts of real monsters who hurt people and real diseases that consume lives and real disasters that steal beauty, when I'm too afraid to take that step out of my doors and my comfort because of what I am imagining . . . I want His arms. I want His truth spoken over me . . . .and I want to snuggle in and be held close.
And He says, "As a mother comforts her child, so will I comfort you" (Isaiah 66:13).
Comfort us, Lord, because the monsters are real.
"The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures,
He leads me beside quiet waters,
He restores my soul.
He guides me in paths of righteousness for His name's sake.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil,
for You are with me;
your rod and your staff, they comfort me."
I am comforted, LORD, because YOU are real.
Counting Comfort: Gifts #223 - 240
God is real
He's greater than the monsters
some day the monsters will be no more
in the meantime, He comforts
many fears are only in my head
His perfect love casts out fear
snuggles with my middle
The Chronicles of Narnia
read alouds coming to life
carpets cleaned (the day after The Princess spilled purple paint)! She was so lucky!
a new soccer season
a Saturday lunch with girlfriends I haven't seen in years
sharing memories and catching up
seeing the beauty they have become
a Sunday church picnic
sunshine and shade
too much food to choose from