“Will it be alive tomorrow?” Mylee asked mournfully of the dead pine siskin she discovered in the yard.
“No,” I replied sadly, wishing I had found and disposed of it first. “It won’t.” We stood together in silence for a moment before I suggested we go over to the bird feeder and watch the living birds. Good plan. Soon she was distracted by trying to sneak up on the multitude of birds enjoying sunflower seeds, and I didn’t have to explain the mysteries of life and death to a three-year-old: Death is part of life, and dead is dead.
That was yesterday afternoon. Mylee has since picked grass for her great-grandmother’s horses, watched Tom and Jerry on TV, taken a nap, played chase around the house, and gone home. I’m sure she’ll be up and running today seeking out new adventures, distracted by new mysteries.
Me? Today I’m still thinking about the query of a three year old: “Will it be alive tomorrow?” I wish I could have answered differently, but in this world dead is dead - the end.
There is a world where “dead” is non-existent, where all is life, where you don’t bury lady bugs (we did that too), or grieve dead birds. A world where hope is a reality and faith becomes sight. One day I pray Mylee can understand this truth: THAT world collided with THIS world once upon a time! Can’t you just imagine a Jewish three-year-old mourning near a certain tomb outside of Jerusalem over 2000 years ago asking, “Will He be alive tomorrow?”
Though no one knew it at the time, the answer was a resounding, “YES!”
Note: Mylee entered our lives when our daughter Cassie married Mylee’s Uncle Mason. Because Cassie is keeping and teaching Mylee while her parents work we have the indescribable joy of seeing the world through her eyes. What beautiful eyes she has!