This is a blog about my spiritual journey. So, you ask, what was so spiritual about driving six hours total back and forth through the mountains in the rain to listen to 15,000 girls scream so loud that my hearing seemed permanently impaired long after the fact?
I have to think about this one.
I must say, I was most impressed at the very end of Miley Cyrus’ performance (for those of you not in the know, Miley Cyrus — daughter of Billy Ray Cyrus of Achy Breaky Heart fame — stars in a Disney TV show as a student who is secretly rock start Hannah Montana).
For the encore, Miley sang a ballad for her late “Pappy” (that’s Tennessee-speak for Grandfather). I could make out NOT a single word because the acoustics in this basketball arena were so horrid. But at the end of the song, Miley wiped tears away as she bowed, then again as she crossed the stage, and once more as the lights went up and she exited backstage. It impressed me that this young girl had a real life outside of the glamour and glitz and thousands upon thousands of screaming fans, a life where the relationship with a Pappy meant so much more than the awards of fame.
I also had a glimmer of hope that she would not follow in the steps of other erstwhile role models, Britney and Lindsay. Not once, but twice in the $20 souvenir program, Miley mentioned the Bible as her favorite book. Hopefully, that book will continue to be her guide in life.
But the best part of the evening had nothing to do with Hannah/Miley.
It was the thrill of surprising my daughter with this gift, of hearing her gasp as we approached the arena and she saw the tour bus: “Mommy. Look, it’s Miley’s bus!!! I can’t believe it. It’s Miley’s bus!!!”
My daughter didn’t show alot of emotion at the concert. She didn’t ooze with thank yous. But when she grabbed my arm in anticipation as we entered the arena, craned to watch every single Hannah/Miley movement on stage, and talked endlessly with her BFF about our trip the next day, I inwardly rejoiced.
Since we are made in God’s image, my guess is that He is equally thrilled to surprise us with good gifts.
Here’s what convicts me. I don’t often think about how it must please God to please me. I forget that He rejoices over me. And especially when times are tough (like the other day), I lose sight of the fact that He wants my good in all that He does.
While I loved serving my daughter through taking her to this concert, I am exceedingly selfish and self-serving with her at times. Many times. But God isn’t that way with me. He is the perfect parent.
Lord, Help me to remember how perfectly you parent me and how you rejoice in making me happy. Break my hard heart and let me recall these things with thanksgiving, maybe with a little gasp of surprise. Amen
P.S. To see how we got the tickets (and more), see: Spiritual Formation & Hannah Montana