Reading time is always fun for us, but today was extra special.

I love having two sons. I know very little about being a parent or being a good mom, but God uses these little boys daily as my tiny teachers, reminders, and perspective checkers. Praying, being joyful, and reading God’s Word have been my biggest reminders from them lately.

Our oldest son is my reminder to pray. Not only does he come up with people and situations to pray for daily, but he stops whatever task he’s doing, closes his eyes tight, folds his hands, and boldly starts praying out loud. It still catches me off guard but is so humbling every time. How many times do I say (even to someone) that I will pray, and don’t actually stop what I’m doing to pray out loud with that person? Far too often.

Our boys can take many situations and make someone smile or laugh. They love doing it. If they see someone who even appears less than happy, they’ll make one of their awkward, in-your-face expressions just to see you smile. They’re my reminders to be joyful in all circumstances, no matter what is going on.

Most of our Bible reading and discussions about Jesus happen at the breakfast table or shortly after (and we are early birds most days). Thankfully this has been a pattern we were able to establish early on as parents and it has been so good for our family. We notice differences in our days when we don’t start with Jesus. Our attitudes, our patience, and our approaches to the day are just off. Today after breakfast, my younger son was ready for a nap already, so I brought my Bible down to read on the couch while my other son played. About a minute after I started reading, he grabbed his Bible, climbed up next to me, and started flipping through his pages. Almost immediately, I closed my Bible and said, “Well, should we read some of your Bible stories?” He slowly looked up at me and then back down at his pictures (notice my rush and his sense of calm? Odd). “No, Mama. I want you to read yours to me. I will look at my pictures.” “Out loud so you can hear it?” I asked him. “Yes (can you hear him saying that?). You like reading out loud. You need to read your Bible, Mama.” My day could have ended right there. I think my jaw dropped and a tear immediately fell from my eye. My three-year-old told me exactly what I needed to hear, and he was absolutely right. He flipped through almost every page in his Bible while I read almost 14 chapters of Isaiah out loud. It wasn’t until the last chapter that he closed his Bible and quickly said, “Ok NOW it’s time to read my stories. You’re done now (I had to laugh at his innocent toddler demands). It was one of the best times of my day today.

I could go on about my little boys and what they teach me, but reminders to pray bold prayers, be joyful, and read God’s word are things that I will always cherish. These three areas are ones we have prayed for our children for years now—that they would long to do those things; in just a couple of years, God is using tiny people to teach and remind me, and for that I am so thankful.