Gentle Reader, I am guessing that, as you read this, you are either feeling like you have got a pretty good handle on things, or – conversely – that you are under-appreciated, under-energized, and not bringing much to the table. Most of us are usually in one of those places, sometimes switching back and forth all day!
My precious daughter was an energetic toddler who wanted to simultaneously be near me all day, and also wherever her older brother was. She especially loved to “cook”, and took great joy in “helping” in the kitchen, especially when I would bake.
On birthdays, we would generally have a family dinner, and that would include a birthday dessert, often a cake! I would carefully assemble the ingredients, measure them out, and in would come Meg, dragging the stool to the counter.
As she climbed up, beaming, she would take the measured ingredients from my hands and happily “plop” them in the bowl. After stirring carefully for a minute or so, she would hop down again and go back to another play.
I would finish mixing, put the batter into pans, heat the oven, and bake the cake. After it cooled, I would assemble it. Meg would often pop back in at this stage, spreading frosting between layers and on top.
Then, she would hop down and trot off, and I would even out the icing and finish the decorations.
Later that evening, after dinner, Little Miss Sunshine would follow me into the kitchen. We would light candles, and she would “hold” the platter while I “helped” her carry in the cake – “The Cake Meg Made”! She would glow brighter than the candles with pleasure at the praise of her culinary accomplishment.
Now, nobody really thought that my dainty child had prepared that cake from start to finish. Except, perhaps, Meg.
She pretty much thought she had done most of the heavy lifting on that project, but as she grew older, she realized how much of it was the work of her mother, in planning, timing, preparing ingredients and workspace, not to mention cleanup. To Meg, she did what she could, and somehow something wonderful happened! Only later did she realize how very little she had to do with the final product.
Sweet friend, on the days when I am feeling pretty much like I can fix the world (and especially my children, because, you know, I am just good like that), I reflect on the enormity of life, in all of its beautiful messiness, and I realize…
My children, my home, my successes…. are just The Cake Meg Made.
And… I am Meg.
So, Dear Reader, look to the One Who is really working all of our works, anyway, but Who graciously allows us to participate in His beautiful plan.
You really can trust Him.
With kindest regards,
Codicil: Meg has grown into a lovely young lady, an artist, a gentle hostess…and a pretty fabulous baker!