Towels and Tears and Kingdom Come

beach babies.jpg

Lake Michigan! (Doctor’s Park, Fox Point, Wisconsin, 7/3/16)

It was a whirlwind holiday weekend for the Cumings family: Saint James to Lacrosse to Milwaukee to Northfield and Winnetka to Saint James. We slept in three different places with varying levels of success. We swam and we played outside and we ate frozen custard and lots of other delicious things. We saw old friends and we met a new baby and we had a quick visit with family. It was a whirlwind, but it was worth it.

Truly, it was a great trip. But all that traveling–packing and unpacking and repacking, sand and chlorine and tantrums and short naps–can leave a person a little frazzled. On Monday, that person was me. Leo was cranky from not napping, and I was cranky, too. My mother missed a few of our family’s towels when she put the rest in the dryer, and this made me crazy. As though she were intentionally slighting Leo and me. She wanted us to go home with wet towels, right? (Pro tip: Um, wrong.)

After the Great Towel Oversight of 2016, we went to Sister Claire’s house for our last night on the road. Much bouncing on air mattresses ensued. I was sure we’d never get the kids to sleep. But then, we snuggled in for bedtime books. Mike read to Zoe; I read to Leo. We all felt a little calmer.

And then. Then, it was time to pray. I started the Lord’s Prayer, and to my surprise and delight, the whole family joined in. Everyone was still. We folded our hands and we prayed together. Leo was delighted. “Again!” he said. So we prayed it again. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.

I didn’t know that Leo knew so many of the words to that prayer. I didn’t know that the simple act of praying it all together (not just two by two, our usual bedtime routine) would feel so different. So tender and so holy and so sweet.

Bonus: If you don’t count the 4 AM wake up, the kids slept till 7:30 AM. Which for the Cumings family is pretty much forever and ever. Amen!

Image from page 60 of "A child's garden of verses" (1905)

Where have you found a moment of calm?



Filed under All in the Family, Thankful Hearts

3 responses to “Towels and Tears and Kingdom Come

  1. Jan Veseth

    sniff. You’ve touched my heart, again. Thank you, Maggie


  2. Julie J

    This was GREAT! 🙏😄


  3. marilyn lux

    I’m glad to hear you didn’t REALLY think I missed your towels on purpose!


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