Today was a day of magic and wonder. In the craziness of life with four kids age 6 years old and under, some days there just isn’t any magic. Some days we get stuck in the hum-drum routine of everyday life. Get up, get dressed, eat breakfast, school, lunch, preschool, off to dance class, home for dinner, on to small group. In all that rush, quite frankly, there’s no time for magic.

Oh, but once in a while, God seems to stop time just for you. A time when the world might be whizzing by you, but your tiny bubble of existence stands perfectly still, allowing you to take a breath and savor life, your life. Today I had a moment.

In an effort to make the most of the beautiful weather and squeeze in a little exercise, I rushed us into a walk after picking Anlynn up from preschool. I strapped Isaac into the stroller and attempted to wrangle Harrison in as well. He wanted to walk by himself, but if I wanted to get my heart-rate up, I couldn’t have him slowing me down! So in he went, screaming for about 2 blocks.

Obviously, no magic yet.

We were moving along a pretty good clip. We decided to stop and say hello to a friend on our route. I knew letting Harrison out of the stroller was a potential for another meltdown when I loaded him up again, but I risked it. What can I say, I was in a good mood. And when the time came, of course he didn’t want to get back into the stroller. So I decided to let him walk for a while in the hopes he would get tired and want to get back in! (btw, I should have known better.) He was running along, happy as a clam, keeping up with my brisk pace. (Unlike Amana who was falling further and further behind…oh, did I mention Anlynn jumped readily into the vacant stroller seat?!) Harrison was barreling through leaves and hopping through puddles. He fell a few times, but all he said was, “I’m dirty, mom!” And not in a whiney, “Ew, I have dirt on me and it’s gross.” way. It was all-boy, full of pride like, “I have achieved manhood: I have real dirt on me!”

And then it happened. Magic. Wonder. Awe.

My son discovered his shadow for the first time.

My world stopped for a few minutes. It was so fun to witness learning in process, to watch his mind expand right in front of me. It caught him off guard. He stopped mid-step. His eyes were glued to the black figure in front of him, who moved when he did. On the corner of Logan and Lexington, there we were, waving our arms and touching our heads just to watch our shadows. I don’t remember if people drove by thinking we were nuts. Like I said, my world stopped. All I saw was my sweet son reaching a magical milestone, and I stepped out of time to join him for a few minutes.


It was a privilege to witness. The magic and wonder of it brings the sting of tears to my eyes. Thank you, Jesus, for pushing pause in my day and blessing me with such a tender moment. Thank you for the sweet new memory.

Dusty Reed

Dusty is a wife, a mother and a friend. Having grown up in a big city, she is now raising her family of seven on a farmstead in rural Nebraska. During weekdays Dusty can be found teaching her children at the dining room table. Or napping; it can be exhausting raising five kids! Dusty is always on the lookout for ways to avoid housework. Her favorite ways are meeting friends for coffee, preparing meals to take to others, or simply laying in a hammock with a good book. Often feeling like an inadequate mess, Dusty is allowing God to enter into those fragile parts of her heart to heal it. Anything she learns along this tangled path of life, she longs to share with others.