London's Lament



You make it hot

For me. For Eve.

We no like it hot.

This morning, pulling into a parking lot, I took the keys out of the ignition and, in a moment of stillness, heard these words from my eldest daughter, a two-year-old.

At first I wasn’t sure I’d heard what I thought I’d heard. Did she just say “God”? But then she yelled it, “GOD!” and I realized London was praying. But the prayer was different from our nightly sessions of thanksgiving. I heard frustration in London’s voice. She had decided, on her own, to talk to God, because she had a problem, and, for all she could tell, God was responsible.

This prayer of London’s reminds me of David’s psalms, the ones that make us uncomfortable.

For example, Psalm 44 in which David confronts God, blaming Him for Israel’s hardships, troubles David deems undeserved. He says “In God we make our boast all day long,” but…

You have rejected us” 

You made us retreat.”

You gave us up to be devoured.”

You sold your people.”

David says, basically, “God, You are responsible for my pain.”

Some people try to write these Psalms off as negative examples, prayers we shouldn’t pray, but I think that’s stupid. Especially in light of London’s prayer this morning.

Maybe it’s weird, but when I heard London talking to God I was filled, absolutely filled, with joy. Later I thought about how hard it would be to reconcile God and pain to a toddler, but that wasn’t my initial reaction. No, my gut said, “My daughter believes.”

Some people think Psalm 44 flows from a doubting heart, but, I’m convinced, that’s not true. David’s words grow from strong roots of faith. He simply cannot imagine God’s not being in charge. He puts complete confidence in God’s power.

London blamed God for the heat because she believed whole-heartedly that God had made it.

I don’t see doubt there. I see faith.