Reprinted from 2016
Out of the mouths of babes. This common refrain comes from Scripture and is often used when a child demonstrates wisdom beyond their years. I have found that wisdom comes in many forms, but, if you are acquainted, you will recognize her anywhere.
These are stories of my encounters with the lady herself.
While attending a farewell party for my cousin many years ago, I noticed that the host owned a pig. Eager for my 3-year-old daughter to see a genuine farm animal, I led her back to the pen. She watched, entranced, as the pig oinked and shook his little tail.
Eyeing the yellow tag clipped to his ear, she observed, “He must be new. He still has a tag on his ear.”
“Yes,” I replied, smiling. “He must be.”
Back in February, a well-intentioned caller from California dialed the wrong number and left a message on my voicemail. She stated she was with the prayer ministry at a church and was calling in response to a note she had received. Now, she may have misdialed, but she left the right message.
“I got a note saying you had a really frightening and mind-boggling incident,” she said. “I’ll just say this: To God be the glory! We know that whatever it is that besets you, God knows it and He’s got it handled. He’ll take care of it and you will be blessed. I do hope you are feeling better about the situation. We thank the Lord for you and we thank God for the situation in spite of how we feel. Praise God.”
Indeed. This messenger of hope and peace spoke life to me that day. She promised to call back, but I did not receive another call. I trust she eventually reached the right person. I sometimes wonder if she knows she touched two lives that day.
A sweet lady I met in a Christian chatroom left me with these words of encouragement, which I cut and pasted into a document I revisit to this day: “You know, Stacy, you are precious. You will be everything God wants you to be one day, gal! Just don’t ever let the struggle get you down!”
God bless you, Keo, wherever you may be. Your words still echo through time and in my heart.
Of course, my parents were always founts of wisdom when I was young (and still are now that I am older). The following is an exchange with my dad that I fondly recall and share with my own daughter today:
“Dad, I’m thirsty.”
“We’ve got water and Gatorade.”
“I don’t want to drink that; I want a Dr Pepper.”
“Then you’re not thirsty.”
My dad was my dad. He had no interest in being Burger King, and I am a better person for it.
Likewise, my mother parcels out morsels of wisdom. I will leave this one for you to savor: “Love loves. That’s what it is, and that’s what it does.”
Stacy Parent is a lifelong resident of Baytown.