A young man’s wife became very ill and died, leaving him alone with his four-year old daughter. The funeral service was simple and heavy with grief. After the burial, his neighbors gathered around him and invited them to bring his little girl and stay at one of their homes this first night. They wanted to spare him the pain going home to an empty house. He thanked them but said that he and his baby girl needed to face it now. When they got home the father brought his daughter’s little bed into his room, so they could face the dark night together.
As the minutes slipped by that night, the little girl was having a hard time sleeping; and so was the dad. Nothing could pierce his heart more than hearing his little girl sobbing for a mother who would never come back. Long in the night the daughter continued to weep. The father comforted her the best he could. Finally the little girl managed to stop crying and the father thought she had fallen asleep. The father looked up toward heaven and said, “Father, I trust you, but…it’s as dark as midnight.”
Hearing her dad’s prayer, the little girl began to cry again. “I thought you were asleep, baby,” said her father. “Papa,” the girl said, “I did try—but I couldn’t go to sleep. Papa, did you ever know it could be so dark? Papa, I can’t even see you, it’s so dark. Then she drew close and whispered “But, you love me even if it’s dark—don’t you Papa? You love me even if I don’t see you—don’t you, Papa?”
As an answer, the father lifted his little girl out of her bed; brought her up to his chest; and held her until she went to sleep. That’s when he took his little daughter’s words and offered them up to God. “Father, it’s dark as midnight. I can’t see you at all. But you love me even when it’s dark and I can’t see you, don’t You?
From: Ron Mehl, “Even If It’s Dark,” Stories for the Heart pp. 164-165.
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