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‘I’m Calling Jesus!’: Turning to Aspirations When Life Gets Crazy

I knew our day was off to a rough start when my three-year-old burst into tears and started chanting, “I’m calling Jesus!” But maybe “calling Jesus” is just the thing parents need to do when things get crazy.

by Heidi Indahl


My husband teaches university courses and is teaching an all-day Saturday class this May. Having him gone on a weekend changes the tone of the house and everyone seems to know it. While eating breakfast one recent Saturday, my three-year-old decided she wanted another muffin, but she hadn’t finished the first one. Rather than eat it as instructed, she not-so-subtly pushed it under the table and fed it to the dog.

In typical three-year-old fashion, she fully expected that I would provide a second muffin, no questions asked. Once she realized that I was serious about not giving her a new one, she gave me the kind of look that only a three-year-old can give and promptly dissolved into tears under the dining room table.

As we attempted to ignore her outburst, she piped up from below…

I’m calling Jesus!

I’m calling Jesus!

I’m calling Jesus!

At that moment, “calling” Jesus was probably exactly what I needed to do to regain my own sense of composure and calm. Yet it was the furthest thing from my mind as I wondered how we would get through our day that had started so poorly.

I have a tendency to think that calling on Jesus needs to be long or complicated. I am so worried about the possibility of needing to cut Jesus short that I hesitate to open the phone line. I have spoken with many parents who experience the same thing.

Only a few days after my daughter’s exasperated outburst, the Blessed Is She email devotional was about aspirations, quick words or phrases intended to focus your mind and thoughts on Christ, even if just for a moment. Growing up, I remember a youth leader from our church referring to arrow prayers—short and to-the-point prayers, offered in a moment of need.

The truth is, a short call with my mom is still a call with my mom. Sometimes our conversations are cut so short it can feel like we’ve only barely said hello, but other times we are pleasantly surprised by an extended chat. The same is true for our time with Jesus.

Sometimes all we need to do is pick up the phone to say hello, and re-chart the course for our entire day.

Follow Jerry Windley-Daoust:

Publisher, Gracewatch Media

Jerry Windley-Daoust is a writer, editor, and father of five. He writes essays and stories at Windhovering and is the show-runner for Gracewatch Media, a small Catholic publisher. You can follow his latest publishing projects at gracewatch.org.

  1. prayerwinechocolate@gmail.com'
    Amy Brooks
    | Reply

    Amen! I have a 3 year old, and I watch another 3 year old . . . and all of my prayers are short and sweet lately. I need to up the quantity though . . . my 3 year old has stopped napping! I need to be much more patient and pro-active these days!

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