Sunday, March 18, 2007

From the mouths of babes

My son has been quite the corker lately.

Just last week he broke some sad news to me. As we drove to art class he asked me if we were drawing with chalk again (we just experimented with pastels in class). I told him no, and he was quiet for several seconds. Then he said, "Mom, when we go to Bible study all they give me to color with are crayons!" I wish you could hear him say it--the sadness with a tinge of disgust was almost too much for my self-control. (He really hates it when we laugh at the things he says.)

Tonight, however, was a different story. While eating dinner I was reminding him to keep his food over his plate, lest it end up on the floor. You know how kids are--he responded with a sly smile and "I've eaten things off this floor you know." This statement was very calculated and didn't phase me. "Really Mom, I have eaten off this floor." Silence. Then he leaned over conspiratorially and shared: "Once I even ate chips from under the couch cushions."

Oh, that was it. How could I keep a straight face?

Well, I couldn't.

I didn't.

I'm laughing as I share it now. The whole family sat stunned for about 20 seconds, then we all burst out laughing. I don't know how we didn't have a food/laughter disaster of large proportion. Luckily (for once) this reaction seemed to be exactly what he had hoped for. Returning to a state of normal eating etiquette was quite a challenge, but eventually we managed.

Aren't kids great? ;-)

Thursday, March 08, 2007

To God be the Glory & Yay Right Here!

I was greeted at school this morning with some exciting news. Several weeks ago I wrote about a couple pieces I sent to an art contest in Tennessee (you can view them below), and this morning I got news that one of them (I don't know which one) won Best of Show and the Purchase Award! Yay! I'm so excited! And so thankful to the Lord because I've been going through a time of great self-doubt about my art. What a wonderful confirmation to continue in the path He has for me! I give Him the glory and the thanks for my talents and skills, but I say "YAY!" right here and now!

"Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!" --Philippians 4:4. So easy to keep this command today. Lord help me to keep it always, even on the days when I don't receive such joyous news! And all God's children said Amen!

Blessings to you wherever you are and in whatever you are doing! :-)

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Perspective on a moustache

Every morning, as I get ready for the day, I confront my reflection in the mirror. Having been a curling iron-challenged teen, blessed with pimples from the fourth grade on, I am always pleased with how much more nicely things progress as I age.

Alas to have such pride. Alas to have such honest children. One day a year or so ago, my precious daughter asked me why I never had braces. Looking at my reflection daily, I can tell you that from my height my teeth are straight and I never needed them. Now however, I became aware of the challenge of perspective. From my daughter's lower height my teeth are not straight. In fact, when I stuck my proud nose high in the air to get a better view of said disfigurement, I was surprised to see just how crooked my front teeth were.

Immediately I began to wonder about the other view. I now knew what people shorter than me saw; what was it that people taller than me were seeing? Slowly lowering my proud little nose I discovered that I was one of those women that I've always dreaded becoming: a woman with a moustache. Not having an ounce of Hercule in me, I immediately dug out the tweezers and remedied the situation. Obviously my husband has more tact than my child. He had never mentioned it. (Had he?)

Well, lest you think me incredibly vain (how does one reconcile that question when blogging...) , the whole thing set me to thinking about perspective. What do we really see? And what would we see when looking from a different view? I have a lovely relative who is prone to harping about the dietary choices and health issues of other people. Could it be that she is simply showing her love and concern for her family members, rather than just endlessly nagging? Or when a Christian warns a non-believer about the path to the eternal punishment, it is usually taken as judgement and hateful. However, from the Christian viewpoint it is an act of love, a heartfelt desire to save the person from a dreadful fate. (Of course, as a Christian I'm far more concerned about where I and my loved ones will end up for eternity, than how long we're going to live here. I do try to make healthy food choices--exempting chocolate of course!)

Hmm. Walking this fine of a line of distinction takes practice so as to not succumb to moral relativism, but it does make me wonder if it would be easier to get along with others if I could remember about our different perspectives? I could be kinder to rude people I meet during the day, if I was just a bit better about remembering this concept. Most of the time I am tempted to be rude back and, being human, I do sometimes fail and miss the mark of kindness; apologizing is something I'm very good at. Perspective can lead to more compassion, if we all remembered it, I suppose. Except that we all seem to be a bit more like Robert Frost's neighbor who believed that good fences made good neighbors. 'And he likes having thought of it so well He says again, "Good fences make good neighbors." ' (Mending Wall)

"As for me and my household, we will serve the LORD" (Joshua 24:16). If that's my choice--and it is--then I must learn to carry this lesson with me daily. In the end it seems that the only thing about my Christian walk that feels like a burden is all the flesh that I carry with me. Perhaps plucking out those moustache hairs helps me in more ways than one. I know I ponder perspective every time I reach for my tweezers these days.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Seeing Stars

Other new endeavors...

The Theme is Redemption


1 a: to buy back : repurchase b: to get or win back

2: to free from what distresses or harms: as a: to free from captivity by payment of ransom b: to extricate from or help to overcome something detrimental c: to release from blame or debt : clear d: to free from the consequences of sin

3: to change for the better : reform

5 a: to free from a lien by payment of an amount secured thereby b (1): to remove the obligation of by payment (2): to exchange for something of value c: to make good : fulfill

6 a: to atone for : expiate b (1): to offset the bad effect of (2): to make worthwhile : retrieve