Happily Every After
I just finished celebrating Easter with the family and took the sacred Sunday afternoon nap and am now onto planning the next big family task: my oldest child's 10th birthday party.
Admitting that I have a child who is double digits is painful. I'm not old enough to have a 10 year old. When I signed on for the happily ever after part of the program, I never envisioned children being 10+ years old. I saw candlelight dinners, staring into each other's eyes, and playing house all part of the future but when I thought about children I only thought of snuggling babies or possibly helping with cute pre-school crafts on a rainy day. I never thought I'd hear these phrases coming out of my mouth:
1) "Call when you get there." I let John ride his bike ALONE to a friends house yesterday. I told him to give me a call when he gets there so I won't worry. As I watched him bike down the street, I had the same feeling in my chest that I had on his first day of Kindergarten. It was the happysadproud feeling that things will never be the same again.
2) "The Easter Bunny is real to all who believe." Okay this one actually came from my 8 year old who asked the other day, "Isn't the Easter Bunny just like someone you know, like you or dad or something?" For about two seconds I had the deer in the headlights look as I thought that "Santa is the spirit of love and peace at Christmas time" saying that my mom told me doesn't fit for the Easter Bunny, so I stole a phrase from my friend Mindy and from The Polar Express. The Easter Bunny is real in our house. I saw the baskets full to prove it.
3) "Because I said so." Every says they'll never say this to their kids. I swore that I was smart enough for my parents to give me a reason as to why I should or shouldn't do something so therefore I would always treat my kids with the respect they deserve and give them the correct reason for my request. The problem is that by the time they hit 10 years old, they should be smart enough to figure out the reason on their own. Somethings I tell them aren't "requests". They are commands and it doesn't matter if I'm asking them to run with scissors - there's got to be a good reason so just do it!
As I contemplate my (and my son's) maturity, I wonder if God thinks these same phrases about us:
1) "Call when you get there." God is with us on our journey and He wants us to check in often through our prayers so that He can help us if we take a wrong turn.
2) "I am real for all who believe" God is there whether you believe or not but God is REAL for those who do believe. God helps us to understand our purpose and lets us see the world in a whole new way. And if we look for it, we'll see evidence of Him in our "full baskets."
3) "Because I said so." God doesn't ask us to do anything that doesn't have a greater purpose. Sometimes we just have to take those leaps of faith and do something because God said so.
So now I'm off to party planning. We all get to live happily every after. Its just that sometimes the picture of happiness in our family and faith looks different than we anticipated. I know that even though my life sometimes looks like the above picture, I can find happiness through the love of my family and love of God. I hope that after Easter today, God looked down on us all and had that happysadproud-wearegrowingup feeling in His heart. And as they say in my husband's Ukrainian family "Khrystos Voskres!"
Until Everyone Hears,