Better than Flowers


Today—a gorgeous 63 degree, sunny day in Round Rock, Texas—I walked my girls to the park. On the way, London stopped to pick flowers. Where she’d stopped was close to the road, and I felt uncomfortable letting her stay.

I told her to come to me.

She ignored me.

I said, “London, come to me right now.”

She smiled, reached for another purple flower, didn’t even look up.

"London," I said in my best Mom’s-the-boss voice, "Right now."

"But Mom, you’re going to love these flowers I’m picking for you," she said smiling. "They’re beautiful and you’ll love them."

"What I would love, " I said "is for you to obey."

The exchange made me think of God’s words to Israel:

"Does the LORD delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the LORD? To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams."

Seems a little grinch-y, but I get it. Sometimes I don’t want a gift. I just want my daughters to do what I say, and in obeying to be protected and loved in full measure.