Christian Living

Spiritual Life

Driveway Declarations

girl smiling next to her driveway chalk artwork
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The cool spring morning was a welcome change after weeks of blustery winter. Soon, the soft white petals of the Bradford Pear that shaded our front yard would spurt leaves, and summers would become unbearably hot. Determined to enjoy the season while it lasted, I grabbed a light sweater and beckoned the children to follow me.

I plopped a lawn chair on the driveway and emptied a bucket of sidewalk chalk on the adjoining grass. Slurping popsicles with one hand and doodling with the other, they giggled and scribbled excitedly. Soon the concrete canvas would become a masterpiece, a collage, a hodge-podge of imagination and creativity. 

Momentarily lost in a book, I lifted my gaze to survey the assortment. A hopscotch outline, stick figures of family members, a sunflower, a tulip, a car that resembled Lightning McQueen, an orange sun, a winding road, a towering mountain, and this:  In large letters shaded pink with a pattern of bright white stars were the words: ANGIE IS AMAZING. “Isn’t it beautiful, Mommy?” she beamed.

I nodded, “Yes!” grinning. I thought so too. 

The day ended but the declaration was visible from three houses down. It made my heart happy every time I glanced at it, walked up to the mailbox, or drove up from work. It washed away in a few weeks until the faint resemblance of it was no longer visible. But it stayed in my heart forever.

I wondered if I would be caught writing something like that. Would I scribble it on a driveway for everyone to see, or hire a blimp to float it across the sky? Would I flaunt it, proclaim it, announce it fearlessly? Even if I did, it would be one thing to say it, and another thing to believe it. My seven-year-old didn’t just write it. She believed it. She was convinced. And no one could tell her otherwise.
Do you remember your seven-year-old self? You too believed you were amazing. And you weren’t ashamed to say it. But somewhere at the intersection of growing up and getting real, you stopped believing. But the truth is, you still are. You may not doodle it on your driveway, or blast it on your desktop, but God has written it in your heart. The Psalmist proudly wrote this song about himself not knowing it would echo in the hearts of everyone for millennia to come: 

For you formed my inward parts; you covered me in my mother’s womb. I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Marvelous are your works, and that my soul knows very well. When I was made in secret, and skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth, Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed. And in your book they all were written. The days fashioned for me, when as yet there were none of them. (Psalm 139:13-16 NKJV).

Not only has God created you beautifully, but He has chosen your unique personality, talents, and gifts that make you exclusive. You are irreplaceable. Jesus encouraged His disciples to approach the Kingdom of God like a little child. (Matthew 18:3). There is something about childlike faith that is simple yet powerful. Will you return to that childlike faith today? What you believe about yourself can change your life, especially when it parallels what God believes about you.  

Copyright © February 2020 Jane Samuel, used with permission.

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