This year, for home school, Brian and I have decided our main theme with the boys will be Creativity and Character. Sure, we work in all the usual academics, but there is very little we think is more important to carry into adulthood than knowing themselves, their family, their values and their God, as well as how to creatively approach the problems and adventures of life. That being said, the boys are not only absorbing it well, but are occasionally schooling ME in the important matters.
One day, the boys found me hiding, with frustration and self-pity gushing in steamy streams down my cheeks. “I’m doing a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad job at house-keeping and momming,” was assaulting my heart. Isaac was in wonder (and continued to be in wonder for about 2 days) at what he claimed was the first time he saw me cry. They asked why I was crying. Of course, I wanted to formulate the perfect response: honest, while guarding them from developing negative self-talk, but all I managed was, “I feel sad and I feel like I’m not doing a good job.”
Ian, 6, and Isaac, 5, agreed that they thought I was doing a good job. Elijah, 3, said, “But in heaven there will be no more crying and no more blood. And if you were crying loud, I would talk to God and pray for you.” Then Isaac took a cue from that and said a prayer for me, then Elijah said a prayer for me, too. Ian followed up with a “magic” trick that made us giggle. That made me want to cry for the rest of the day at how precious they are and how they rescued** me, in a spiritual warfare sense. They already get that there is a battle being waged for our hearts and, through prayer, we can find comfort and restoration and be warriors for each other.
**I carefully delineate for them that each person is ultimately responsible for and in control of his or her own feelings, but we can encourage each other, pray, choose our words carefully, and so forth.
On another day, I took the boys to get a hair cut. Elijah was unbelievably talkative with the hairdresser. He asked all sorts of questions about where she lived (did she live here in this room?), if she had three boys too (no, just 2 girls), oh, and by the way I just got a playground (last Christmas), do you have a playground?, sometimes I defeat the Joker…then some talk about spiders and snakes.
Next, out came:
E: Sometimes my dad dies.
HD: Oh? How?
E: Like this (demonstrates dramatic death). We wrestle and I defeat him!
E: But in heaven, there won’t be any more deaf.
HD: Oh? What happens?
E: Jesus will come back to get us! He will take us to heaven up UP UP in the sky! In heaven there will be no more deaf. Or crying. Der will be yots of candy! And marshmewows! And God will yet me swim in His BIG POOL!
HD: Wow! That sounds great!
By then, I was convinced that she was taking her 8th trip around his head with the shears just to keep chatting with him. Yes, kids really do have a special key to people’s hearts. I could barely contain my mirth, listening to that little half-pint chit-chatting and “bringing the gospel.” He made her day. And my day. The little guy schooled me again on how to connect with people and share the joy in his heart. Every day, it’s more clear to me what Jesus meant about us “becoming like children.”