January 21, 2013

when I want to bubble up my kids forever

There was a conversation on facebook yesterday about how to explain Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to a young child.  While I am not at the point of having this conversation with my boys yet, this topic is something that has weighed heavily on my mind in the recent months.

The day will come when my boys learn about evil.  That bad things happen to good people.  That hurt happens.  Pain happens.  Discrimination.  Lies.  Hate.  Murder.  Manipulation.  Just evil.

It breaks my heart, because I want their little worlds to stay perfect.  No danger, as it is today.  Full of trust and hope and wonder.  I want to hide them away and bubble them up and keep them from all harm.

But that isn't good for them either.

I don't think anything has shown me God's heart for us more than being a parent has.  That kind of love and willingness to sacrifice.  And his is more than I could imagine.  Far far more.

But it is clear to me that even in my mere nearly-two-years of parenthood, that we are fallen from birth. I have often thought of the command to "do all things without complaining or arguing" as potentially one of the first sinful things people do.  The most basic to our nature.  Kids complain.  They argue.  They don't start out lying or manipulating or stealing.  Just complaining.  And that is already sin.

As I contemplate how I want to, someday, explain the fallen world for what it is, I know have to start at the end.  The gift given because of our fallenness.


This world is fallen.

And there is grace.

So you complain and argue.

There will be grace.

So I snap a sharp remark or act out of frustration.

Grace for that as well.

In order for my children to understand our desperate need for grace, they WILL need to {someday} see this fallen world for what it is.  This sad, broken world.  Desperate for a savior.  Because we will never be perfect.

I'm in no hurry to have this conversation.  It will happen someday.  But not tomorrow.  Not at two years old.  And not for many years.  Today I will simply act in grace.  I'll respond in patience and gentleness.  And when I don't.  When I'm imperfect, I'll ask for forgiveness.  We try to be good at that 'round here.

In all things, especially in this season of parenthood, perfection cannot be the goal.  We will only fall time after time.  Grace is the testimony.  I do my best, but my works don't save me.  Only His blood.

That is the one thing I hope my kids walk away with in 18 years.  If nothing else, grace.

*linking up with Heather for Just Write.

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