The Love of Christ
Tonight I experienced two someones showing me, all of us-Mom, Pete, Erik & all three of my girls-the love of Christ. We were helping Mom host her pastor and his wife for a thank you dinner. They have done so very much for my mom!! We have joked that Brother Dobbs is like our other dad because Mom did not have single surgery that he wasn't there with us, praying and waiting. As soon as we got the all clear, he would be on his way. He was just like another one of the family. It was very touching.
So the meal was on and they arrived to us putting the finishing touches on supper and then we enjoyed a very nice meal together. I was working on getting things all cleaned up when I noticed they were in the other room playing UNO with my kids. Just them and the girls playing UNO. They were loving on my kids and treating them like family and my heart melted. Then I joined them for a round of Apples to Apples. They were so loving and we laughed so much. They loved all of us with the love of Christ despite the fact that we were very loud and Lilly was very very excited and often very clingy/being Lilly. My girls will forever remember them fondly for how loving and accepting they were to them. Unfortunately, these days most grown-ups really don't have time or the desire to engage children. (Often, I am in this group as well, I am ashamed to admit that!) Some people we know sit back and tsk tsk and tell stories of how wonderful and quiet their own children were at that age and judge my parenting-at least that is what it feels like. They sort of demand that the children be sent off to play...SOMEWHERE ELSE. It was refreshing to all hang out and laugh together. It was refreshing to be accepted-flaws and all(We got lots of them!)-and not feel judged. Then I walked them to their vehicle when it was time to go and he opened the door for his wife. Wow. I didn't know anyone still did that. It was such an easy habit that she waited for it.
Now, I must point out that we definitely have people in our church who treat us and our children this very same way. They bless my very soul and my children love to spend time with them. However, it is a small number of people. Of course, there could be tons of people in our church who would be just like that and we are just so anti-social these days we have missed them. We are not invited to alot of things and we don't invite alot of people over much either.
Maybe that is what is wrong with kids today-not enough grown-ups are interacting with them, being patient with them. I always say the trouble with kids is that they turn into grown-ups and remember how they were treated. Often this makes them want to be far far away from church buildings (and their parents for that matter!). Jesus always made special efforts to be with children and people who did not fit the mold. I need to work on being more like that. He did not condemn, but he inspired people everywhere he came across them. I need to be more like that too!
It was a wonderful night and despite spending a hundred hours on my feet to make it all happen, I really enjoyed myself. My mom almost smiled and looked pleasant a few times too. ( ;