When my granddaughter Abby was 3, she’s wasn’t the best sleeper.
She wasn’t the worst sleeper, but definitely not as good as her brothers, then ages 1 and 5. In fact, she was quite the master of “stalling” at bedtime and “needing” things in the middle of the night. You may be familiar with the universal toddler “necessities” list: potty, drink, doll, stuffed animal, nightlight, book, blanket, socks etc.
But Abby upped this game to a new level, crying out in the wee hours of the morning, prompting Mommy to appear and ask the sensible question: “What do you need, Abby?” To which this adorable child would sweetly reply: “More Jesus.”
Check and checkmate–Abby wins hands down! I mean no matter what time it is and how tired you are, how does anyone say no to “more Jesus”?
In case you’re wondering what Abby specifically was requesting– it was for mommy to sing the bedtime ritual melody “Jesus Loves Me” one more time (with Abby often adding her tiny voice to the chorus).
Definitely a 3-year-old genius. I would want to give her “more Jesus” any time day or night.
So, Abby’s hard-to-deny request got me thinking: What do I want MORE of in 2021? (I can definitely think of some things I want LESS of–pounds, isolation, wrinkles, political unrest, just to name a few!) But what do I hope for MORE of?
Certainly more good health for all of you fighting cancer and other serious or chronic illnesses. Definitely more comfort for those who are grieving the loss of loved ones. Clearly more love for families torn apart by the pain of addictions, divorce, and abuse. Undoubtedly more patience for all of us enduring this devastating pandemic. And absolutely more peace for this violent world.
But when it comes right down to it, I think I’ll simply pray that you and I have more Jesus this year.
I pray that from His glorious, unlimited resources He will empower you with inner strength through His Spirit. Then Christ will make His home in your hearts as you trust in Him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. And may you have the power to understand as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep His love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. —Ephesians 3:16-19
And when you can’t fall asleep or when you wake up in the middle of the night, perhaps you will choose to echo my little granddaughter’s request: More Jesus.
Be sure to open in your browser to hear an old favorite of mine from Scott Wesley Brown “I Wish You Jesus.” Feel free to close your eyes and receive this as my New Year’s prayer for you.