Friday, September 26, 2008


A couple of years back, Jo discovered this song:

"Shine" was the very first song that she squealed over when she heard the opening notes on the radio. It was the first non-Disney, non-Sunday School song I heard her singing when she thought no one was looking. And it was the first song that she played, ad nauseum, for days on end.

The song is, I believe, older than the girl herself. It's catchy. It's poppy. It's unavoidable. It's ... nothing I would listen to if given my druthers.

But as my daughter has grown I have discovered exactly what it is about this song that she is so attracted to. You see, Jo shines.

dull as dirt
you can´t assert the kind of light
that might persuade
a strict dictator to retire
fire the army
teach the poor origami
the truth is in
the proof is when
you hear your heart start asking,
"What´s my motivation?"

Jo is anything but dull as dirt. Her affection for Converse All-Stars is widely known; her preference for wearing mismatched Converse All-Stars is probably even more widely known. Her fashion sense is one part tweener, one part pretty and a huge
(inherited) helping of punk rock. Need someone to star in your play? Jo's on the job. Hear a voice chattering above all the others? Probably Jo. She gives unabashedly real hugs to those that she loves--and frankly, she loves just about everyone she meets. She carts around toddlers and dances with preschoolers, no matter who's looking. And why does she do all of these things? To draw attention to herself? No. Jo is just one of those people whose personality bubbles to the top and froths over. Her motivation is joy, nothing more.

when you let it shine
you will inspire
the kind of entire turnaround
that would make a bouncer take ballet
(even bouncers who aren't happy)
but out of the glare
with nowhere to turn
you ain´t gonna learn it on "What´s My Line?"

Jo's joy and enthusiasm for life does inspire people to take note. She has the kind of magnetism that draws crowds in her direction. She is a born leader, not just because of her birth order habits, but because people genuinely like her. They want her to like them. They want to bask in her glow.

make ´em wonder what you´ve got
make ´em wish that they were not
on the outside looking bored
let it shine before all men
let´em see good works, and then
let ´em glorify the Lord

My baby girl makes following Christ look good. She is honest. She is trustworthy. She loves God. She serves others. Her willingness to share His blessings in her life leaves those who don't know her well wondering how in the world dh and I got so lucky as to have such a great daughter. Of course, the answer is that dh and I have had very little to do with it.

Jo just shines.

Happy 11 years of glorifying the Lord, Jo.


The Small Scribbler said...

This kind of person is few and far between. You are blessed.

And I am bobbing to the music in my head.


JustTheFactsMa'am said...

I've always loved this song. Happy Birthday, Jo!

Missus Wookie said...

Happy Birthday Jo!