I haven’t reached the door of my daughter’s bedroom before her voice calls me back, “Stay here.”
Standing next to the light switch, I reassure her, “I’m not going anywhere.”
“Stay here, mama.”
I flick the switch bringing darkness into the room. “I love you. I’m not going anywhere.”
We do this every night.
I wonder if she’s picking up on my worries about the world, or perhaps it’s due to her being away all day at kindergarten. Every night, back and forth, she wants me to stay and I assure I will.
Later when I’m ready for bed, sitting in my chair with my Bible, I offer my own prayers to God, and they’re not much different than my daughter’s.
“Stay here, God. Be with me. Be with our world.”
I listen to the chorus of insects outside my window, I see the moon’s light, and in the stillness, I hear God’s response: I love you. I’m not going anywhere.
Kimberly Knowle-Zeller is an ordained ELCA pastor, mother of two, and spouse of an ELCA pastor. She lives with her family in Cole Camp, MO. You can read more at her website, follow her work on Facebook, or sign up for her monthly newsletter.