"Sorry, kiddo. No balloon."
"I just don't have one, Tyler. Sorry, buddy."
"Daddy have a balloon?"
"No, Daddy doesn't have one either.
"Sorry, lovebug. No balloons today."
On came the tears. I broke his heart with my lack of follow through. (Actually, 'follow through' implies a promise in the first place. I had made no such promise, but I could not meet the demand. We just don't keep helium at the ready at our house.)
Cry, cry, cry.
As I got him dressed, I said, "Tell you what, kiddo. Why don't you pray about it? Tell God that you really would like a balloon, and see what happens today."
End of discussion. I don't want it to sound like I used prayer as a tool to appease, but since I honestly couldn't produce what he had asked for, at least he stopped asking me. Might as well go straight to the source of all blessings, including balloons.
We went on with our day, running errands, crossing items off my list, and joining my mom on a lunch date. (We like those.) As we sat at our table in the fast food restaurant du jour, a family walked in and proceeded through the line. And wouldn't you know, the little girl was holding the string of an orange balloon that bobbed over her head. I promise.
Tyler spotted it, and his face lit up. "My balloon!"
He didn't ask to hold it, and he didn't demand one of his own. All morning, he had simply prayed to see one. And God said yes.
A balloon? Sure, Tyler. I can do that. And I'll even make it orange.
"Do not be anxious about anything.
But in everything,
by prayer and petition,
present your requests to God."
~ Philippians 4:6