When You Feel like Everyone is Bigger, Better, Smarter… { or ‘How to be a Star’}


When the fog meandered in lost on a spring evening in May, she hung her apron up in the back mudroom.

She wandered down the back lane too.

Down in the woods, she could hear them, the frogs singing, an invisible symphony.

She knotted the one side of her skirt up to step over a pothole. She tried to make her way.

In a world of reaching, how do you rest? In a culture of numbers how do you kneel? In a world of ladders how do you go lower?


Somewhere a dog barked loud.

She looked across fields.

There’s always something barking loud in you that you need a bigger field.

A better kid, a bigger house, a greater life, a grander point.

There’s always part of you that wonders if anything you do matters enough.

And there’s always someone who makes sure you know how much smarter and wiser, bigger and better, known and greater they are.

There’s always someone who snatches the horn to sing too loud of their own tens of thousands.

She had to remember to tell herself that: The ones keeping tally in life just want to know they count.

Everyone wielding their own horn just wants to be held.

And Jesus, He stretched His arms out to the whole world — and He nailed His offer right there.

Who wants the love of a Messiah more than the lauding of men?


She stood at the top of the hill behind the barn.

She could do this: When the world strives — the wise still. It’s the only way to feel God’s embrace.

The whole world could compete to be heard and esteemed and known and get ahead. She didn’t have to. She could breathe deep and feel all of her filling with this calm sea of peace.

You can give up the need to compete in the world — when you accept being complete in Christ.

Sometimes the way to win is to never enter the race.

She stood there listening to the frogs croaking, song filling all the spring sky.

She just stood there….

There’s no need to keep up with the Jonses’ when you are keeping company with Jesus.


When she rambled back up to the house, up to the porch, she nearly didn’t hear them, the barely cry, the hardly-ness of new hatchlings.

She stood on the step and stretched.

Up in the leaves, up in a branch by the top stair, that’s where she found them. Found them hidden, found them cupped. She could see that this was the mattering part — that in hiddenness, we are held.

She stood there, rooted there, watching and witnessing it — the hatchlings, how they opened so wide, how without a sound, they opened so wide.

She could feel it in her — her heart imitating that one movement, doing just that — soundlessly doing just that.

This is all that would ever matter —- that she opened wide so He could fill her.


She needn’t be heard…. because she was known.

The hatchlings, they held themselves in this silent, fearless assurance.

The fog settled down in the hollow, a veil hiding the woods away. Behind it somewhere the frogs sang on…

She felt found.

She would be small. She would make her life small.

There on the stairs, there by the nest of hatchlings in the deepening twilight, she looked up.

She could see it all above her —

How the stars are always small…




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