I’ve memorized my feet and the inches that surround, certain I’m stuck—Layne of the littlest faith. I’ve felt miles and miles from salvation and I’ve made every excuse in the book to just keep these eyes shut. I’m sleepy Layne, I’m spent—all tucked in and tied down and hard-pressed from every which way. I can’t stop complaining about the here, the now, the mystery I’m headed into. I’ve been listening to—no, I’ve been inviting—a billion lies. And this bitter heart turned rebel heart turned tired heart sees its state as paralysis. So I am stuck. Stuck by pretend-paralysis.
To the child and the childlike, paralysis is fill-in-the-blanks and single file lines. It’s days-left countdowns, it’s saying “no” when every fiber in you is screaming yes. It’s weeks looking identical, it’s being benched when the game’s all you know. It’s trading the exquisite parts of your Divine design to meet drab expectations. But to those restless and ever-running, it’s really just deception—and deception by pretend-paralysis is the Liar’s favorite party trick. But Grace is a Rescuer, a Truth-teller. Grace walks right in, through mobs of disbelief, through the already-mourning and the doubtful, through those at the end of their tether, through those all out of tears. He’s come all this way—and it’s you He’s after.
They’re too busy seeing straight through Him—labeling Him nothing-special and nonsensical—to notice His quiet whisper get your little heart back to beating. That whisper their weeping screamed louder than—the loveliest notes delivered straight to your soul, intended just for you to come alive to. Talitha koum. Words that flutter like watercolor yet weigh enough to snap you all out of monotony and the most rigid of rhythm. Talitha koum. While wind satisfies raspy lungs, and this marathon-semester dream screeches to a stop. Talitha koum. It’s an infinite pinky-promise: my Oldest Friend just keeps coming to find me.
Come alive, My little girl.
Show them I’m up to something.
All this Glory I’ve been slumbering through seeps through the windowpane and His rough-handed touch somehow braids relief and ready all together. Every square inch of me remembers Whose I am. The doubters quit and the mourning stills and those who thought He was done using me wake up a little bit too. Talitha koum. The coloring books, the balloon bundles, the cloudless blue skies—they welcome me back. Life welcomes me back.
Fear sits stale in a sleep cycle as spontaneity and surprises color me back the way I like. I wake up all valiant, tiptoeing behind Him, hands stretched wide with expectancy. I’m restless, and ready ready ready for turned pages because I peeked, and soon I’ll call my happiest place home. My liveliest place! It’s here that all costumes are just-because, and the fun limit doesn’t exist and I get to bring up my Jesus every chance I get. Little kid screaming and hug-bombing and roughhousing is the expectation and our nametags don’t force us to stop it but to add to it, to meet them right there in it. The outside world is lightyears away, and popsicles and scribbled handwritten notes pinned public on a day-maker board charge you up. My place of mealtime benchtop dance parties and constant cartwheels, where the childlike and the child see all things as shine. And the noise never stops and tiny people don’t stop either, but this place is my happy place. My here looks a lot like Up There—and I don’t know much but I do know that I’m awake and myself and meant to be here and I’m real happy he called my heart alive.
Talitha koum. He whispers my spirit awake each morning, mercy afresh and Life breathed deep into my lungs. He’s come all this way—to revive me, to restore me, to remind me there’s Glory waiting out there as I slumber. To remind me I’m always and forever His little girl.
today I praise You for wake-up call whispers, and a sunshiney run, and fancy words prettiest left untranslated. thanks for a near-finish—oh how I crave the Other Side. thanks for calling me Yours, for always coming after your handmade runaway! thanks for Mark 5:41 and proving the sleepers & doubters wrong, thanks for fueling alive.