Last night ended up being one of the best nights of my life. It started out poorly. I was feeling down, dealing with conflict all day and the last thing I wanted to do was sing, but I put on my headphones anyway so I could listen to worship music in front of the fire and if anything, bring God "a sacrifice of praise."
Avril crawled into my lap, seeming to sense my mood, and after "asking" to be covered with a blanket (meaning that she pointed to a blanket and grunted with emphasis), she looked at me in the eyes and smiled for long time, until I couldn't help but smile back at her. I gave her some kisses and we giggled and played and that's when I had time to grab my camera and take the picture above.
Then she laid her head against my shoulder so that her ear was right up to one of the headphones on my ears and she could hear the worship songs, too. I rocked her like that for over an hour, to the beat of the music and we listened together and I kissed her hair and smelled her and cried for joy and allowed my sweet daughter's love for me and the words of songs like this one to minister to my heart in the midst of this trial.
I wondered then if God the Father ever took joy in me like I took joy in Avril, if He ever buried His face in my hair and breathed in deep and smiled for joy when I spent time in His presence.
And then I knew it. Somehow I was sure that God had a father's heart toward me, that He has a father's heart toward us all and that is why He created the family to begin with, to show us His heart for us. And, in the midst of this mess I was aware that my Father God was rocking His sweet girl and He was blessed by her love, as I was rocking my sweet girl and her love was blessing me.