Emma Tanner

A Work in Progress

I Heart Holiday

on June 2, 2013


Recently I’ve been looking and thinking about ways to hear from God; to listen, and be still. I went away on a family camping holiday armed with plenty of reading matter, my journal, and lots of good intentions about finding an idyllic spot in the forest to sit, and reflect, and listen. (Did I forget that the children were coming too?!)

The first day of our holiday saw us setting off, armed with a picnic, on a mission to Explore the Forest. As we walked along the track, the sunlight hit the new spring leaves and made them zing a vivid green that hurt your eyes if you looked at them too long. The girls started picking up stones from the path- nothing new there, their pockets are always full of them- but these were different and they wanted to share them.

“Mummy, look! This stone’s shaped like a heart!”

And it was. We all found them; all gave them to one another. It was lovely, but I didn’t think much of it.

The next day we were on the beach. My older daughter came running up to me, breathless with a new discovery.

“Mummy! I’ve found another one!” And there on her little outstretched hand was a beautiful heart-shaped pebble. I looked down at the beach, and saw another, and another. We looked at each other, and the same thought occurred to us both at the same time.

“Do you think someone’s trying to tell us something?” I asked my munchkin.

“I think God might be telling us He loves us,” came the reply.

Yes. Yes.

I sensed Him saying “I love you, my daughter. It’s good that you’re seeking after me, and it gladdens my heart. But I made you. I know you better than you know yourself. I have examined your heart and I know everything about you. I knit you together in your mother’s womb. I know how to get through to you, how to get your attention. I know what makes you tick. You don’t need to search for me- I’m always here. It’s not complicated- I love you.”

After that we found hearts everywhere, as if they had been rained down from heaven. Heart-shaped puddles (even in the tent!) Heart-shaped seaweed. And so, so many heart-shaped stones. This completely undid me. The thought that the awesome Creator God would speak to my daughter and me so clearly was mind-blowing and totally humbling. It also released me to just be; to spend much-needed time with my husband and my children, whilst soaking in the love and the presence of my Daddy in heaven at the same time. It has been a wonderful experience to share and talk about with my precious big girl, and something I think we will always remember.

So thank you, Father. Thank you for reminding me that you can and will speak to me through the bustle. Quiet is good, but we can find and hear your still, small voice even in its absence; in the joyful exuberance of life with two small children.

Note: I asked my daughter’s permission before sharing this…. she was happy for me to write about it and helped me to photograph a very small selection of our hearts…. 🙂

DSCF1630 DSCF1632 DSCF1610  DSCF1530 DSCF1587 DSCF1615DSCF1593  DSCF1594DSCF1606


2 responses to “I Heart Holiday

  1. Annie says:

    Beautiful writing and amazing photos especially the puddle one!!


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