Thursday, April 28, 2016
Some Kind of Wonderful
Peter slips on his shoes (or not) and heads out the door right after breakfast. I catch up with him around lunch and push a peanut butter sandwich into his hands before he's gone again, tooling around the back yard on that hand me down big wheel, squatting in the dirt and poking at bugs with a stick or working on his pumping technique on the swings. At dinner, he begs to eat outside.
We've had maybe three 70 degree days total so far this year, but you can't convince this guy it's not summer. He has moved into sandals and shorts and refuses to look back, even when the temperatures plummet into the 50's and freezing puddles form in the driveway. To this 4 year old, summer is here and our little yard is calling him, the magnetic siren song more than he can resist. He's out the door first thing in the morning and dragged in reluctantly at dusk.
Having kids is sometimes the reminder I need that the world is a wonderful place. I'm prone to sad spirals of hopelessness, but their enthusiasm is infectious. The reminder to look up, breathe deep, embrace the grace - it's a message my kids deliver to me like a fistful of dandelion blooms on that first warm day of spring, as comforting at the gentle roar of the lawn mower two houses over. When my insides are all tempest and trouble, it's the invitation to step out of myself for a moment, away from fear and darkness and into the sunshine.
It's a sermon that is best taught by accident, unintentionally. It's how lives lived wild with love, gratitude and peace pierce those around them with tender hope. Not because it is lectured, shamed or bidden, but because it is effortless. Free.
It's preached in her laugh when her sister pushes her on the swing. In the sidewalk chalk drawings that welcome daddy home. In young minds with vibrant imagination and days long pretend play.
Springtime with my kids is alive with Gospel truths when nothing is further from their minds. Life is good. Love wins. All is grace.
Like a four year old barefoot in the driveway, chucking rocks into a rain puddle for the sheer joy of watching the ripples they make.
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