The other night, after Corrie's bath, I was gingerly combing through her wet hair, carefully trying to loosen the tangles. Gentle combing got most of them, and spray-on conditioner was certainly helpful too. But if you've ever combed the long, wet hair of an active toddler, you know that ultimately, there are some tangles that only come out one way:
Sometimes a momma just has to pull. And it hurts.
I protected her scalp the best I could, of course. I carefully gathered up the most stubborn tangles, leaving some "slack" in her hair as I worked out the knots. But when all other methods failed, I had no choice but to give those tangles a good tug. I do this because I know how beautiful her hair can be. I know that the momentary tugging will produce a head full of bouncy, blonde, healthy waves.
And a funny thing happens. She fusses at me plenty when we work out the tangles, but when we're done, she happily climbs into my arms. She trusts me. She knows that the same momma who does the tugging and pulling is the same momma who feeds her, who sings to her, who holds her when she's sick. I prove my love to her in a million little ways, so that when the occasional hair-pulls come, she doesn't doubt me.
It's a silly little analogy that still demonstrates an important truth. God tugs at me when He has to, when it's the only way for Him to achieve what is necessary for me. I don't like it. It hurts. Sometimes it really hurts. But do I trust Him? Of course. How could I not, when He proved to me once and for all, on the cross, how much He loves me? May I always trust Him with the same child-like abandon with which my daughter trusts me.