Thursday, August 24, 2006

Blessings Galore

Let me first begin this post with a sincere thank you for your kind words about my attitude with my sickness Tuesday. I have to admit that every time I read words that praised my faith or my mindset, I squirmed. I shook my head and thought if you only knew the real me. I want to put in the picture to you all that I don’t have my act together. I am not amazing in any sort of way. I am only a fellow follower of Christ who is trying to not pull an early Peter, but rather wanting to be a woman of complete and utter faith in every miniscule part of her life. I’m not there yet, but it is where I want to be. But I am excited for the journey that God has set before me.

Now that I know I’ve set you straight, I can continue on with the genuine subject of this post.

Yesterday was such a peculiar day. First with your comments, then with the wonderful posts from others who don’t realize where I’m at in my life – but God used their words to encourage my faith, to build my hope and to encourage my prayer life – and then the situation that I had at home. It’s not even a week into school and my son was sent to the principal’s office. Ugh.

His teacher had reminded him a few times to keep his hands to himself, but he chose to ignore her instructions. When she was moving another boy away from my son, my son reached out and Indian burned his arm. That was enough for her, so she sent him to the office, rightly so I might add. The principal spoke with my son and then sent him back to the class.

When I picked my son up from after school care, he ran to his backpack and immediately pulled out the note from the teacher to give to me. He knew he was in trouble big time. We have a rule that if you get in trouble at school, then you will get in trouble at home. And it is the type of trouble that will not feel good, if you know what I mean. (Ahem.) So he knew that he was facing “hard” punishment the moment we were in the door.

I took him upstairs to his room and discussed the entire situation with him, asking why he chose to disobey, why the hurt the other boy (“He hurt me first!”), what was he thinking when all this was going on, what other choices would have been better and how the behavior of others should not discourage him to make wise choices for himself. After his spanking, he was required to write apology letters – one to the teacher for disobeying, one to the student for hurting him and one to the principal for having to be sent to him in the first place. The boy was at the table the entire time until bedtime. Plus when his father came home, my son endured another stern talk and further instructions on his atonement for this willful sin. I would so not want to be a child in trouble in this family. We’re hard!

The entire situation made me think about grace – about how I am glad that God extends it to me when I make bad choices, but He still has me endure the consequences, not because He doesn't love me, but rather specifically because He does. It sent me into my son’s room to remind him that we do love him – that we don’t enjoy disciplining him, but it is because we love him that we do. Hugging and holding him, but still having him face the penalties should encourage (we are praying fervently that it will) him that he is good, just that he needs to make better choices to develop into a better person and a faithful Christian. All that is what God wants for us too.

After the kids were in bed and Mr. Right and I had some “us” time, we were settled in for some reading. Alas, it was not the nightly Bible reading, but rather a mystery and a history book, respectively. I’ll let you guess who was reading what. I hadn’t even read a page before I received a call from, as Mr. Right put it, “Susanne in Canada.” I grabbed that phone as quickly as possible and talked with our very own Susanne from Living to Tell the Story. What a blast! We were laughing, talking, giggling and basically chatting like two teenage girls who just had new phone lines installed. And, knowing how I feel about talking on the phone, I was completely surprised that we had talked an hour. It only felt like 20 minutes at the most. That, my friends, makes it a great call in my book!

This morning I started talking about the call again, and before I could get it out, Mr. Right looked straight into my eyes and said, “I know, Shalee. We’ll get to Canada someday. I promise.” That man is so smart and so good to read my mind like that and so sweet to say it out loud. (So someday Susanne, you're going to need to clear some couch space for us and have lots of coffee on hand.)

So I've had blessings galore, and for that I thank God for His goodness and His showering of blessings even though I know I don’t deserve them. He is that good.

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