Namine is getting more and more into participating in church, and that makes me happy. Paying attention to a half-hour sermon is iffy at best, but that’s also true of most adults, so I’m not really worried about that. But Namine loves to sing, and hymns are a great way to drive children’s participation.

Even though my church puts the hymn lyrics on a large screen in the front, Namine can’t yet read fast enough to keep up. But Jessica and I sing loudly enough and enunciate clearer than we normally would so that she can follow along and only remain about a half second behind.

As Lutherans, we’re not accustomed to much of the more spontaneous congregational involvement — such as clapping after a hymn is sung, which many people do now in our church. I still think it’s weird. But Namine knows only a little of church customs, and nothing at all of denominational differences. She knows that she likes music, and she knows that she loves Jesus.

In yesterday morning’s service, during one of the hymns, Namine raised her arms and yelled amidst the loud singing of the congregation, “Hi Jesus! I’m singing songs to you! I love you!”

Being a relatively conservative Lutheran, I would never have raised my hands in church — even if I were moved by the Spirit to do so. I suppose I would be a little too shy, a little too concerned with others’ opinions.

I shouldn’t be. I should be like my daughter. I should be like Namine, concerned with nothing but my personal relationship with my Savior, raising my hands, too, shouting my praise to Him.

Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”
Matthew 19:14

Husband. Daddy. Programmer. Artist. I'm not an expert, I just play one in real life.


  1. Paul, I loved this blog post! God bless Namine and her enthusiasm and love for Jesus. My eyes filled with tears to read the words, “Hi Jesus! I’m singing songs to you! I love you!” Jesus and all of heaven must have rejoiced at those words. I am not a parent of a special needs child. I am a sibling of a special needs child. I have a special place in my heart for special needs children and their parents. God bless you and keep writing.

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