Not too long ago, my little hurricanes and I watched “Anne of Green Gables”. Over the years, me and my kids would have AGG marathons. I thought they liked them; however, I have learned otherwise from some of my adult children.
There is something in me, deep down, that resonates with this quaint little series. I don’t know if it’s the luscious cinematography of Prince Edward Island, or the cute and innocent love story of Anne and Gilbert or even Anne’s transformation from a precocious girl to an accomplished young lady. Probably all three. But I think what I like the most is the character of Matthew Cuthbert.
Here are a few quotes from his “gospel”:
“You can talk all you like, I don’t mind.”
Isn’t a pleasure when we meet someone who just listens to us, who is truly interested in what we have to say, even if it’s things we’ve talked about over and over again. When I was going through a sad divorce, and I thought I would never get through the emotional devastation, there were a couple of folks who would listen over and over again; always encouraging me, always listening when I know they had other things to do. Often, I fall short of this quality, but I am trying to be attentive to the little stories and questions from my kids.
“We might be of some good to her.”
This is his answer to Merilla’s pronouncement that Anne would be of no use to them. This sweet, old bachelor persuades his spinster sister in keeping orphan Anne despite her not being a boy. Over time his sweetness rubs off on Merilla as when Anne leaves for school and the train pulls away, “He knew we needed her.” Kindness and tenderness as exhibited in this character cannot help but produce good in and to the recipients. Even amidst the turbulence of teenage tumults, a little shot of kindness and consideration helps still the stormy seas.
“I never wanted a boy. I only wanted you from the first day. Don’t ever change. I love my little girl. I’m so proud of my little girl.”
Matthew utters these last words to the weeping Anne as he slowly dies in her arms. He loved her from the beginning. What a blessing and comfort for Anne in her subsequent grief. We have the power in our words to bless, even in difficult situations. But it’s not just his loving blessing to Anne, but his expression of absolute love and affection to her. He never regretted having her in his life. One of my favorite verses from Luke, “Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom,” seems to be embodied in this poignant affirmation of love by Matthew to Anne. Our Father in heaven gladly gives us the kingdom, is happy we have responded to him. He has only wanted us from the first day.
When I am in need of some parental praise, and am not feeling it from my own parents, I remember this line from Anne of Green Gables and believe that my Father in heaven feels this way towards me.