Teresa "Shiny" Sunshine, that is the name my three year old gave to the small stuffed crab toy my husband brought her back from his recent trip to the east coast. It's just a little crab. It didn't cost a lot of money. But she loved it. Then she lost it.
Here's how it went down.
My daughter had played with Shiny the entire day, not letting it out of her sight since her father had given it to her earlier that morning. It crawled amongst lego buildings. It snuggled to watch YouTube videos. It danced to her favorite song. As the sun prepared to set we all were getting dressed to go to a church activity that evening. We were out later than normal so when we got home it was time for bed. My little one, now in her 'cow jumped over the moon' nightgown was asking for Shiny but Shiny was nowhere to be found.
I mean nowhere.
We looked through the whole house; under furniture, in drawers, through every toy bin. We double checked the car. We even had a conversation with our dog about whether or not he had eaten Shiny. We promised him we weren't mad but we just needed to know the truth. (Since no crab remnants were to be found anywhere in the house we were fairly certain he hadn't touched the thing but we needed to be sure.) After an exhaustive search I was beginning to think I had warped into a Toy Story movie and the crab was on its way to Pizza Planet.
But bedtime waits for no man. So the search would have to. Bedtime is not fun when you're three and want your stuffed crab. She wasn't happy. But she asked for a bedtime story and being the amazing creative genius I am told her the tale of a beautiful princess who had an awesome daddy and beautiful mommy and the best big sister in the whole world and they lived happily ever after. She felt the need to add, "and she lost her crab shiny and was very sad." So yeah, this crab thing wasn't going to go away.
What does a mom do?
This mom pulled the covers up around her little arms, kissed her cheek and proceeded to say bedtimes prayers. After the 'thank you for this day' and the asking for sweet dreams I added a, "please help us find Rory's crab. Its a small thing but its really special to her." Then we said amen and as sleep overtook her I silently asked God to bring the crab back from Pizza Planet or wherever a little stuffed crab would dare to venture.
Here's the thing about God, He cares about the little things as much as the big things.
So as I watched my princess fall fast asleep I asked God to help us find Shiny. And He did.
I heard my husband still rifling through drawers and bins and childsize play kitchens and the thought struck me...Snow White's Cottage! One of my little one's favorite things to play with are her little princesses and their little houses and Snow White's cottage had been conspicuously on its side when we can home. (Actually that's a regular occurrence because my three year old is like a tornado hitting those mini kingdoms.) But it couldn't hurt to look right? So I joined my hubby in the playroom and we pried open the little cottage that was packed full of miniature Disney princesses and one stuffed blue crab.
And I thanked God for the help.
You may not think it was God, you may think it was just coincidence. I know it was God because I know His voice and I knew He was giving some insight into our late night family crisis. (Losing a toy is a crisis when you're three.)
I placed that little crab on my daughter's pillow so she would wake up to it and heard the whisper of my Father letting me know that nothing is too small for Him.
Good church kids know that nothing is too big for God. But we forget that nothing is too small for Him either. So take the story of Teresa "Shiny" Sunshine and be reminded that God cares about the little things too.