Today as I dropped Gates off at school we did our standard goodbye routine.
Me: Have a great day at school!
Him: OK, I will!
Me: I love you!
Sometimes he ignores this last line, sometimes he doesn’t (usually he’s too busy running towards school). Today he answered. “I love you too, mom.” Pause, then he turned around again, “But sometimes I don’t like you.” And off he ran, leaving me to wonder what prompted THAT this morning.
It’s ok, really. I don’t expect my children to like me all the time. I’m a parent, I’m going to make decisions they don’t like. I’ll survive the moments when they don’t like me, knowing that as they grow in maturity they will start to understand why some of the decisions were made. But even after the moments of not liking me it always comes back to love. Snuggles, hugs and laughter, we can’t escape the fact that our lives are intertwined and we know we would be lost without the safe place of our love to fall back into.
As I was driving home after dropping him off I began to think about that statement and my relationship with God. Sometimes I feel the same way. Sometimes I want to say “I love you, but right now I don’t know if I like you.”
When my husband spent a year after we moved here looking for a job, I didn’t like God very much.
When I began to realize that my perfect child had developmental delays, I didn’t like God very much.
When I see pictures of starving children, I don’t like God very much.
When natural disasters kill hundreds or thousands, I don’t like God very much.
When I know in my heart he wants me to do something that I don’t want to do, I don’t like God very much.
When I struggle to make sense of some of the things in the Bible, I don’t like God very much.
Yes, there are moments when I just don’t LIKE God. As I grow I begin to understand some of those moments in a different light; I begin to understand the why behind what happened. Some of it I know I’ll never understand while I’m alive on earth. But underneath it all is the current of love, a love that will not let me go, a love that I don’t want to let go of either. His love is my safe place to fall when the world doesn’t make sense…when HE doesn’t make sense. Just as Gates knows he can count on my love enough to be honest about not liking me sometimes, I know that I can count on God’s love. Even when I don’t like him.
I love you, God. Sometimes I don’t understand you and I don’t like you, but my life is intertwined with you. I would be lost without you, without your love. I’m glad that you love me unconditionally, even when I’m acting like a child. I’m glad that after the times of not liking you I can still turn to you and say “I love you,” and know that you are loving me too.