Daily Devotional for February 9, 2022

 Annalee is one of my all-time favorite people.  She is smart, beautiful, has a scary sense of humor, and is five years old.  In fact, with her giant brain stuffed in that little head, and her natural leadership qualities, Annalee is either going to be a great world leader, like Nelson Mandela or an evil genius, like Lex Luther.  It could go either way.
I am pretty sure Scott and Melissa know they are in over their heads trying to raise a daughter with such a high IQ, who never forgets anything, and seems to enjoy getting into trouble.
Yesterday, Melissa told me the latest saga from The Book of Annalee.
A few days ago, when Scott was having a conversation with Annalee, she said, “For Christ’s sake, Dad!”
At that moment, hearing his five-year-old daughter say something so profane, Scott started to go into, “I Am Fine with Having One Daughter Instead of Two,” mode.
Luckily, at that same moment, Melissa stopped her husband from spending the rest of his life in jail by explaining I was the one who had taught Annalee to say, “For Christ’s sake.”  
At first, I didn’t understand what Melissa was talking about.  Then, I got it.
Every Wednesday night, during the church-wide meal in Grobowsky Hall, all the children gather on the stage at the front of the room.  They put their hands together, close their eyes, bow their heads, and lead the congregation in the blessing of the evening meal.  
It is a prayer that is very important in my family.  It goes back at least six generations.
“Gracious Father,
Accept our thanks,
Pardon our sins,
Receive us in heaven,
For Christ’s sake.  Amen.”
Annalee, after hearing this prayer her entire short life, was used to saying, “For Christ’s sake.”  She had no idea it could be said in a bad way.  She was innocent.
This chapter in The Book of Annalee teaches us three very important lessons.
First, Scott didn’t blow up when he heard, what he thought, was his daughter say something terribly wrong.  By not immediately losing his patience and doing something he would come to regret, Scott was following the sage wisdom of the wisest person God ever made.
King Solomon said, “Patience leads to abundant understanding, but impatience leads to stupid mistakes.”(Proverbs 14:29 CEB)
When the Annalee’s of life make you nuts, be patient.
Second, our little ones always repeat what they hear.  
What we say and how we say it, matters.
Third, it is clear Annalee’s pastor needs to do a better job.
Prayer:  Dear Gracious Heavenly God, thank you for the children.  Guide us as we nurture, teach, and lead them to be the people you created them to be.  For Christ’s sake.  Amen.
Someday, I am going to write a book entitled, Lessons from Annalee.  It will be a bestseller.
I pray your day is filled with joy and laughter.
Tom Robbins