Monday, November 27, 2006

Parental Daze

I am sure there are many experiences in parenting that are common across all spectrums of culture and even time but I was particularly struck by one this weekend. If you have ever had small children, you have had to endure countless occasions where an older acquaintance has told you to enjoy your current stage in life while it lasts because it will be over so quickly. Obviously there are variations on the delivery but that is the basic theme. To be honest, as a parent on the receiving end of this sentiment it begins to get a little old. After roughly a bazillion times of hearing this it starts to sound a bit repetitive.

Or does it?

This weekend I got to visit briefly with a friend who looked at our kids and said, “Enjoy this time. Eventually it will be hard to get them to slow down long enough to hang out with you…” At first I just chalked the comment up as number one bazillion and one. But then something occurred to me. Though we were sitting there together and he was talking to me, he was far away in another time reliving special moments. The look in his eyes told me that was not unique. Pretty much every time someone had relayed the same message they had had the same look. I had just not paid attention. But now as his voice and expression made it clear to me that the sight of my precious family had stirred a special memory in him I began to understand. Sure, the basic message of fleeting time is still there, but the memories flooding the hearts of people who have watched their families grow up and out are especially poignant.

I wonder why number one bazillion and one struck me differently than all the rest? I would love to pridefully say that it has something to do with the fact that he realized our little family is so beautiful that it has become the recruiting poster for fond family memories for other who want especially idealistic memories. That’s what I would like to say. But that’s just so I wouldn’t have to admit that the comments hit home because I see my kids growing so fast, and that time really is fleeting, and that I too have times when my eyes glaze over and my mind is flooded in a mist of memories.

Nope, I’ll stick with the prideful recruiting poster thing.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Happy Birthday, Kendra!

As a group the ones who know will turn the common phrase
Cards and calls will also come with hopes for great birthdays
And though the thoughts and feelings they display may all be true
They cannot help but fall well-short of how we feel for you.
Those who know you want to find the words where they might state
Why they wish you well all year and not just on this date.
Your friends would try to tell you just how blessed their live have been
Through your tireless work to help both strangers and good friends.
Your family would know that all your life you’ve been so strong.
So may your bed be warm today and all your naps be long.
Your kids will search for ways to tell you how they love you dearly.
Daily hugs and kisses show they mean this more than yearly.
And finally it comes as no surprise to learn how badly
I honor you or let you know just how I love you madly.
So, know this day that love and wishing well for you will thrive
And also know I’ll never tell you just turned thirty something.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006


Sunday, November 05, 2006

Hope Floats

We just got in from the family retreat. It’s something the kids always look forward to even though it comes and goes pretty quickly. It’s a shame, too, because there is all of the planning and packing for what turns out to be about a 40 hour gig.

This year as I was canoeing along the Frio River with Addie. I was looking up at the massive cliffs above us when a thought occurred to me. As amazing as God’s handiwork was manifested in the nature around us, one day it will not be here. Even though I am so enthralled with mountains, they will perish.

But we will not.

Creation is His handiwork. We are His family. In a classic separation of work and family, God has shown how He places His family above His work by providing for us over and above all things. He made a plan for us that existed even before the rest of creation came to be. And that plan makes it possible for us to live with Him after it has gone.

Maybe I should canoe more often.