We have been a little late in taking down our Christmas decorations this year. But, we were finally able to get that task checked off the to do list. While we were un-decorating the tree my Beautiful Bride noticed that we seemed to have an unwelcome guest.
There in the midst of our tree was a lizard. I guess that it had gotten a little bit to nippy outside for him and he had decided to take up residence in our toasty warm home. As he searched for a comfortable place to rest he must have thought that our Christmas tree would make a nice vacation home. He looked quite happy and content in his new abode. Tadpole instantly wanted to see, so I lifted her up. She oohed and awed over how cute it was, and the fact that it was just a baby. Then she tried to catch it.
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This little girl loves animals. She loves lizards, snakes, cats, dogs, birds and just about any other creature she comes across. I remember one night when we arrived home from Church we found a tree frog on our door. Tadpole thought it was awesome. As she moved in for a closer look the frog jumped off of the door and onto her shirt. It Amazed me that she did not start freaking out. She just stood there and squealed, “Awe, its giving me a hug!”
Tadpole loves to spend time around just about any animal she can get close to. Whenever she sees a new animal, she is always welcoming. She doesn’t care what it looks like, where it has been, how it got there, or what it is doing there. She instantly is glad that it is around and that she has the opportunity to say hello.
Now, I have no desire to keep lizards living in my home. I don’t hate these little baby dinosaurs, but I did need to evict this little guy because he was failing to pay rent. Thankfully Tadpole did not throw a fit because we have been able to teach her that God has created this wonderful playground for all animals to enjoy. This magical place that we like to call “the outdoors”.
As I thought about my daughter’s welcoming spirit towards animals I realized that I could stand to be more welcoming myself. Not to animals, but to the people God allows to cross my path. Far to often I find myself instantly judging others by their appearance, age, or perceived circumstances. I am quick to place people in my own predetermined categories and deal with them as such. When someone walks into Church I take one look and have decided if they have come for the right reasons. I am ready to categorize them as someone who will not listen to the message, and I don’t know a thing about them.
May we have a kinder, more welcoming, hospitable spirit with those we come in contact with. May we be more like Tadpole, and truly deal with others with a spirit of gentleness. May we show an honest interest in their lives and really attempt to get to know them and who they are. May we care enough to build relationships with those we are around.
How about you? Do you find yourself hesitant to love others at times. What things affect you most? Is it the appearance, age, race, or other factors? What helps you keep the right focus when dealing with people you don’t know? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.
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