This sweet reflection comes to us from Juliette Alvey.

This picture was drawn by my daughter, Devyn, and the words she expressed are very literal. My husband is 6’4” and is strong enough to pick her up and carry her (or even swing her upside down). She says she loves him because of this, which leads me to believe that this simple act must mean a lot to her and make her feel secure and cared for.

As I look closer at the picture, I see even deeper sentiments that Devyn is not old enough to express or identify. For one thing, did you notice how big she drew her own head? Yes, she is the one on the left with the rainbow dress and yellow hair, and her “big” dad is on the right with the solid orange outfit. I have heard that children many times draw themselves bigger than others in their pictures and that this indicates an inflated sense of self. I think we can all relate to being the center of our own worlds. It is our own head that is processing the world around us and our experiences. So even though our prominence or importance is not reality, we can understand this view.

I also wonder if the size of Devyn’s head means that she feels like she is very big and heavy. She has definitely been struggling through big emotions lately. The other day, she and I were talking about her middle name, which is Joy, and I explained that we chose that name for her because we wanted her to be a joyful person and have a lot of joy in her life. She responded, “But Mom, that’s not true because I’m always screaming and crying about stuff.” It broke my heart that she identified herself as a screamer and a cryer rather than how we named her and see her—as a “Joy”-ful little girl. She must feel like her emotions are too big even for us sometimes. Our frustration, and occasional pleading for her to please calm down, probably does not help her feel like we can handle it. But as much as I feel like a failure as a parent at times, we must be communicating something comforting to her because she knows that her daddy is big and can carry her. He can carry that heavy head of hers that is full of emotions, questions, confusion, and the feeling of having no control.

No matter how big our problems, guilt, emotions, or issues feel in our lives, we know that we have a Father who is big and can carry us. Not only does he carry us because He is bigger than any of our burdens, but he takes those burdens away and carries them himself. Jesus carried a heavy cross up to Calvary, but our sins and burdens were even heavier. He willingly took them on himself, and through him we are lifted up to a loving and never-ending relationship with our Father—who carries us, and our big heads.