Lilly's Earth Day Birth Day

Dear God,

Thank you for the surprises, and the miracle, and for giving me a tiny glimpse of You, how you know what will happen before it does; that was fun. I suspect that these gifts were Your way of showing me that You and Your angels were there when Lilly Juliana was born last Thursday.

Her mommy was surprised that her birth was so different than her brother’s, so much faster did Lilly make her grand entrance into this world. She was surprised not to have the hours of waiting that she anticipated when she told her husband to take their little Cole to the baseball game. But thank You that Cole’s godfather, recently arrived from Colorado, was near the ballpark and for the way they managed to meet through the crowds to release the daddy to go to the hospital when called. Thank you for steering Lilly’s daddy through congested rush hour traffic to his baby girl’s birth moment. Thank You Lord for surprising Lilly’s parents; may they always have enough time to recover from the unexpected.

Especially thank You for the miracle that little Lilly was so big and healthy even though her pre-birth environment was not normal, new information that surprised the parents and the scientists. Her health is a gift I will cherish especially because to achieve it, You overcame nature. Were you answering prayer Lord, or did You do that to surprise her mamma again, or because You wanted Lilly’s earth day birthday to be touched by the unearthly, the Super Naturalness of You. 

Lord, thank You for casting me in a little part of that big, sunny, clear, spring day. How wonderful it was to be present during the last doctor’s visit and especially for the lunch we all shared with my father’s echo in the courtyard, and the few hours of walking and riding we spent together while Lilly’s mommy became increasingly aware that her birth day had finally come, five days late and right on time.

Thank You Lord for every perfect minute of her birth day, and now I have this request. Lord, please bless this little Lilly whom you brought from the darkness of the womb into the light of this world. Bless her with a vision of You. May she see You, the Creator of this glorious earth, walking beside her and within her. May she speak with you often and may she listen as You speak to her. With her flowery name and her earth day birthday grant Lilly a special love for this beautiful planet of ours, to care for it and protect it from its enemies, the wasteful, the polluters, and those who would curse it with vile words and deeds. May little Lilly Juliana live, under your watchful Father’s eye, in such a way that she can inherit the new earth as her everlasting home.

I suppose You knew I would dare to ask for even more.

Love always,



Did you notice that my quest to find the kingdom of God that is said to lie within began and ended with denying one’s self for love?


When God’s Son, Jesus, said NO to His own desire to keep walking around this old earth with His friends, healing people and amazing them and He sweated blood thinking about being hung, He denied Himself to do what His Father sent Him to do. That is to die for love of humankind, for our immortal life in the kingdom of God.


After wandering the face of the earth and my heart seeking God’s kingdom, I suddenly remembered that the only time I had ever glimpsed such an amazing place was when I decided to do what I knew would make me unhappy for the sake of love. It was an itsy bitsy, teeny weeny crucifixion but it opened the gates to a spectacular kingdom.


God loves circles.


Aspiring immortals who love God so much more than we love ourselves, our pride, even our opinions, are the ones who are invited to experience the kingdom of God within and the future one. My sad realization was that I can only possibly experience the inner kingdom if I end my search for it and instead spend more time yielding my will to God’s Will even if it kills me.


Even though the kingdom of God is surely within me, I am not allowed to go in and out of there whenever it pleases me. That sacred city, like a holy altar will open its gates to me when the Lord allows it to. Not a minute before.


Meanwhile, at the center of the inner kingdom of Evangeline also dwell other people and I am sure even a few fairies and angels. So, for now I can visit them whenever I want. Every night this week, when the sun has gone and darkness lets me rest, I have visited my father.


Jesus and I have this in common. We love our fathers.


My father led a life rich in love and suffering. His intimate relationship with suffering probably began on that cold February evening when he was a boy of ten who had just learned that his adoring mother, who went to buy them cupcakes, was killed by a car. I didn’t know that boy, but I know that his own strong and holy father taught him how to live when life was severe, and how to love the Lord. Day after sorrowful day young Charley listened to his father’s songs coming up from the basement kitchen, love songs to his departed wife, songs his dad composed as he cooked for his family of eight. My father told me that when he was a teenager he studied character, and how he measured up. No wonder Dad became such a strong and beloved man.


The Charley I knew was also a single father because of my mother’s psychological illness. How he suffered from her disease, bitter conflict and loneliness; so tormented was he that he even lost his business and his fortune. Rather than relieve himself of his obligations with bankruptcy, Charley shut down the business and worked for others to pay every last debt while his wife was in institutions and his teenage girls at home depended on him.


When cancer was his last torturer, dad wanted to keep on living, even if it meant to keep on suffering, for love of his girls. I’ll never forget the distressed look on his face when he realized that he would have to leave us and his fear that we would need him and he wouldn’t be here for us. He must have been remembering the bitter grief of his own mother-loss. The many times I did indeed need him and he wasn’t here, I had that look to remind me that his wish and will was not granted, so I went to Our Father who art in heaven for help.


It took me several years after he died to cry, so relieved was I that his suffering, not just the disease had finally ended. Dad tried to teach me how to deny myself on several occasions when I thought the fair thing to do was the thing I wanted most. He said the fair thing to do was what the other person wanted. And so on my first father’s day without him, my gift to my dad was to give away something that I wanted very much to keep.


My father didn’t just tell me that he loved me, he showed it. He showed me the value of suffering and the importance of reaching out to those you love. My dad is a worthy immortal who died to self over and over and over again. And so when seeking the inner kingdom of God, near the sacred and shut gates I spend time precious time with my father within. Thank you Dad.