In case you wonder where we live, we live in that house that has really, really tall grass. That is until a couple of days ago. Jeff has been so busy with work and a remodeling project to get ready for little Lucy that our yard has been rather neglected. But this week the weather wasn't quite as hot, and Jeff had the opportunity to cut the grass. Of course G was right there beside him cutting the concrete with his own little lawn mower. Because the grass was so high, there were tons and tons of grass clippings to rake. Yesterday, Jeff finished up the yard while I cooked dinner. I asked Jeff if he could take G outside with him so I could finish up without a baby hanging from my legs.
While I made dinner, I looked out of the kitchen window. There was Jeff sweating and working hard to get all the grass clippings up. And there was G who would come in right after Jeff and shuffle his feet through the pile dispersing the grass clippings. At times I laughed out loud at the scene. It happened over and over again. And then Jeff stopped what he was doing and bent down on G's level. "Oh no. A spanking is coming," I thought. But no, Jeff just bent down and gave G a kiss...just because he wanted to give him a kiss. They worked some more, and then Jeff took another break to push G in the swing. Finally, about the time dinner was ready, Jeff finished raking the clippings and had a nice pile stacked up by the street.
So this got me to thinking about God. It got me thinking how he has an overall plan for his people and how sometimes we get in there with our sin and just get dirty. Oh, our sin is still ultimately part of his plan, and he uses it to mold us and bring glory to himself, but he would like nothing more than for his people to be obedient. But we aren't. We jump in the grass piles. We even wallow in them from time to time. (Like when G just completely sat down in the grass pile). And God still bends down and gives us a kiss. He tells us that he loves us and shows us grace. This doesn't mean he never corrects or disciplines his people, but he is "slow to anger and swift to bless." And ultimately, despite all our sin, despite how dirty we get in the process, he accomplishes all things to his glory.
In a very in your face type of way, children expose us. They show us who we really are to God. We look at them and see their unknowing disobedience, we see their blatant disobedience, and we know that God sees the same thing in us. And just as we love and adore our children, so God loves and adores us...only our love is fallible and finite, and his love is perfect and infinite.
I just got back from taking Graham on his first trip to McDonald's. Some of you are probably thinking,"Disgusting...why would you let your child in that place." Others of you are probably saying, "Why have you deprived that poor kid." But it is what it is. I have no aversion to McDonald's, but I do have this fear of the playground. When I think about playgrounds, my heart starts beating faster, my forehead begins to "glisten," and I anticipate every bad thing that can happen. So what's the big deal, Jen? I'll tell you what the big deal is. I have visions of my son getting trapped in some tunnel. I have visions of me being 9 months pregnant trying to free little G and then getting trapped myself. I have visions of the fire department coming out to rescue us and having to cut through the plastic around my big belly in order to free us. That's what I think about. So I guess it's really not G's safety that I'm concerned about as much as it is my own embarrassment. But we made it. Graham couldn't even climb up to the tunnels and slides, so we're all good. No entrapment, no firefighters, no embarrassment. G loved running around and playing in the "little kids" section, so I guess I can say our first trip to McDonald's was a success! And since I don't have a picture of his first visit to Mickey D's, I thought I would leave you with a picture of his first trip to Krispy Kreme. Healthy, I know. But, it was free doughnut day. How are you going to pass that up?