There is a tiny little person growing inside my daughter-in-law.
Think of it! From a man’s perspective, I can’t stop marveling at what it must be like to have a human being growing inside of you. It’s a tiny little miracle. It just doesn’t seem possible. And yet it happens all the time.
I was there for the delivery of both of my sons and was only down the hall for my first grandchild, and I can tell you the miracle was real, but it just all seems hard to imagine, even after going through it before – albeit as mostly a spectator.
Our second grandchild is now about the size of a lime, according to a web site delivered by Google to my phone. A lime! I just want to hold a lime in my hand and think about what that means.
We live in a world that is seemingly surprised by nothing. We all imagine ourselves as worldly, if not jaded, about the world around us, but when you are standing next to someone who has a surprise inside of her just months away from the grand entrance of birth, how can you not be swept away in awe by that reality? I suppose, were it not for her persistent morning sickness, Mandy would probably just be constantly beaming from ear to ear about what was brewing within.
I am often overcome by the many miracles around me, to see fantastic cloud formation rising miles into the sky, or verdant lawns sprawling all around or tiny buds forcing their way out of sticks of wood. How can something seemingly lifeless suddenly come alive?
We plant seeds, almost pebbles really, in the ground and a few weeks later they emerge in glorious life, tiny little stems and leaves reaching for the sun and soon to grow to many, many times the size of the seed itself. It has become so commonplace, we are oblivious to it. We even somehow think that we planted the seed and so this miracle was our doing, but it’s far beyond our powers. We’re just the vehicle, not the magician.
All around us, nature is exploding in life, emerging from its own annual winter pandemic to fill our lives with food, lumber, shade, wildlife cover, beauty and sweet fragrances; it restores us. It’s a celebration for our senses and more incredible than anything mere mortals have created. Life is exploding all around us — a plethora of tiny things made big on a scale so fast and so vast that it’s mind boggling.
I planted a few trees last weekend and was thinking how many decades I have invested in the future by doing so. These plants are going to be here to spread their shade and privacy for decades if everything goes right. All I did was dig a hole.
About five years ago, we went to California and saw redwoods that began growing before Christ was born, and are now towering high into the sky. Think of it: a living thing that has survived for millennia. How can we not all have our breath taken away by that?
But for now, I am focused on my little lime tree, growing almost imperceptibly inside the woman who married my son. And I think of the once little lime tree that will be the big sister, roughly twice her own birth length right now, and so much a little person in her own right.
My wife and I, already blessed in infinite ways, will soon have another lime coming our way, just as we were for our parents before us, and going back who knows how many generations before that.
And all of it born of love, probably the biggest miracle of all.
We have taken it all for granted, too often. The miracles keep happening, whether we appreciate them or not. This year I hope to take in the lime time and cherish this blessing and the great expectations that come with it.