I serve in a four’s room, just one of the many preschool rooms at my church. When it’s time for the Bible story we all file into a “large group” area and sit on carpeted risers. I love it, but the effort it takes to get everyone down the hall, accounted for, seated and facing forward…it can suck the joy out of just about anyone.

A few weeks ago I was sitting in a sea of preschoolers, catching a breath, legs tingling as they began to go to sleep (That’s what happens when you put adult legs in a space designed for a preschooler.) when out of nowhere my ponytail was pulled (extremely hard) from behind. Now, I don’t know how you respond to unexpected pain, but I get angry. I whipped my head around ready to calmly but firmly tell someone that we do not pull hair. And that is when I saw the most angelic face staring up at me. My anger, frustration, irritation, discomfort… it all just melted away.

I don’t know her name. She’s not in my class. She was one of our hallway neighbors. All I can tell you is that she’s three-years-old, has downs syndrome and wanted my attention. (How else do you get a lady to turn around other than pull her ponytail? Makes perfect sense now.) So I gave it to her. I backed up a little and accepted the blessing of a new friend that day. We clapped, wiggled and danced together. She would point during the story and shake her head like she was agreeing with the storyteller. She yelled the bottom line with both of her chubby hands cupped around her mouth. It was one of the most precious things I’ve ever witnessed.

By the time large group was over I knew I had been given a gift and I felt unworthy she had chosen me. I’m just thankful that in the midst of the normal chaos, God allowed me to enter His abnormal peace. It truly was a beautiful blessing.

Lord, my flesh gets so irritated sometimes. Help me to remain open to your blessings throughout the day. Amen.”

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