Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Tales of a Parent Tuesday {Vol III}

{Vol I}
{Vol II}

Y'all, I tried really hard to think of a story that didn't involve bodily fluids. I promise I did! But...I failed. So, I leave you with this.... Sorry! #parentlife

Not from that night...he's eating a plum in this one. But you can see the determination in his eyes...

Beans? Beans!

Dinner time is often a struggle. Toddlers are notoriously finicky eaters. They are also inconsistent. A favorite food one day will be thrown across the room another. We literally never know what to expect. I generally keep a back-up plan of black beans because 99% of the time, Grayson will eat these when he'll eat nothing else (though this past week he has refused them three times! What is happening?!?!). 

This was a black bean night, perhaps already the second of the week, and it was falling under the 99%. Grayson happily scooped a few spoonfuls of beans into his mouth. Then, out of no where, he started throwing up! He leaned over the side of his high chair and vomited a stream of black beans and milk (sorry guys!). Shocked because he seemed fine moments before, I held a tiny napkin out in a useless attempt at catching some of the mess. Scott was in the other room on the phone, talking to someone who might be interested in buying his trumpet. (PS -- anyone want to buy a trumpet??) I felt helpless as Grayson continued to cough and throw up and I just repeated, "It's okay! You're okay." Scott walked in, phone to his ear, mid-sentence, to see this surprising scene.

"He's sick!" I say, "The stomach bug!"
You see, I had the stomach bug just days before. This was what I was most afraid of--having a toddler with the stomach bug. Not only would it be scary and gross and sad, but we had just gotten over three weeks of awful sickness between his ear infection with dangerously high fevers and his severe allergic reaction to the antibiotics. This would mean more missed work, more sorrow, more sleepless nights...certainly more laundry and mopping, it would seem. 

Grayson finally stopped throwing up and whimpered a little. Feeling defeated, I grabbed a wash cloth and ran to the sink to wet it. "You're okay! I'm going to get you cleaned up!" I promised.

As I held the washcloth under the water, I heard Grayson, in his innocent little voice say, "Uh-oh!" I turned to see him looking down at the mess on the floor and appearing quite concerned. 

"It's okay, buddy! Mommy will clean it up; don't worry."
He looked up at me and replied, "Beans?"
I wasn't expecting that.

"Yeah, buddy. Beans. Let's get this stuff out of the way so I can clean you up."
I started to move the high chair tray with his bowl of black beans and he started crying, reaching out for the beans.
"Beans! Beans!" He cried.

"You...want more beans?" I asked, shocked.
He reached out in confirmation. I hesitated for a moment, considering whether giving him the beans after he had just puked up a considerable amount was a bad parenting move. He was persistent, so I decided to put the tray back to see what he would do. He immediately scooped up a giant spoonful of beans and shoved them in his mouth. 

"MMM!" He exclaimed.
Seriously? I sat back down at the table and watched in confusion, concern, and disgust as my little boy shoveled beans into his mouth while sitting in his vomit-drenched clothes. 

Scott came back in the room, after getting off the phone. 
"What is going on?" He asked.
"Well," I replied, "Grayson is basically acting like a college student who drinks so much he pukes and then continues drinking! Should I not let him eat anymore?"
He didn't know. Neither of us knew what the right move was. Ultimately we just decided that Grayson knows how he feels better than we do. If he felt like he could eat more beans, then I guess it was okay. 

He finished the bowl of black beans, we stripped him of his acrid smelling clothing, and carried him straight to the bathtub. We watched him carefully during his bath and the bedtime routine. He seemed totally normal. He wasn't anymore fussy than usual and went right to sleep. I was expecting to wake up at some point in the night to a bed full of puke, but that didn't happen either. Turns out, he really wasn't sick at all.

I guess maybe he just got choked and puked as a result. I really have no idea. All I know is that he definitely did not have the stomach bug that I coincidentally had earlier that week, and that boy LOVES some black beans! He doesn't let anything stand in his way!

Sorry for another gross story, but that pretty much sums up life with a toddler! If you like this one, I have another good one where Grayson is throwing up (from coughing too much) and when I ask Scott for a bucket, he brings me a trashcan that is basically made of metal mesh. In other words, something that did absolutely nothing to catch vomit, but rather let it spill out onto my lap. Good times.

Okay that's enough puke for one day! Until next time...

Happy parenting!

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Missing the Mark

These pictures have nothing to do with this post other than the fact that I took them this morning when we were reading the verse I talk about in this post! Also, the cuteness! :)
Lately God has been teaching me that some of our biggest flaws as humans actually stem from our perfect design as God's creation. They become flaws when they're misdirected. Silly people, we mess up perfectly good things all the time. Some people refer to sin as "missing the mark," and the reality of that is becoming quite clear to me. Yes, I believe in evil and I believe we are fallen, depraved people in need of the saving grace and love of a savior. But I also think that most of the sin in our lives is really just taking the attributes God has given us and using them in ways he did not intend.

I think we can see this all the way back to the original sin of Adam and Eve. Why did they eat the forbidden fruit? They did it because Satan convinced them they would be like God and have all his knowledge. Is it bad to desire knowledge and to be more like God? I don't think so because we're called to be more like Jesus in our lives. But the desire to be equal to God, to the point that you would doubt, disobey, and lie to Him to get what you want, well of course that is sin. And that is what Adam and Eve did.

This morning Scott and I were reading in Ecclesiastes 4:4:

And I saw that all toil and all achievement spring from one's envy of another. This too is meaningless, a chasing after the wind.

Gosh, how true is that?? How often do we work hard to achieve certain things, whether that be status, power, wealth, relationships, a certain type of car or home, to be a certain type of parent, to have a certain number of followers on our blogs...all because we see someone else who seems to have what we want and that makes us want it all the more? We can all agree that envy is not a good thing, but I think it stems from us looking to others as our role models. Do you strive toward a certain career because someone influenced you? Do you strive to have certain standards, morals, values, etc...because of what you were taught by your parents, teachers, friends, church, TV, music, magazines, movies, etc...? I think we can all say that yes, most of our toil and achievements come from looking to someone or something as a model or guide. And why do we do that?

I think because God calls us to follow Jesus, to learn from Him, to become more like Him through the power of sanctification by the Holy Spirit. We were designed with this plan in mind. Wewere created to be a people who are driven to model their behavior and attitudes after someone else. Following Jesus was part of the plan from the day God created us. So it only makes sense that we have an innate impulse to follow others. The sin comes in when we misdirect that impulse to modeling after people/things other than Jesus. And when observing others as a means to gauge who we want to be, it's a slippery slope before envy sets in. It can easily become more than just hey, I really admire that person to I really want/need/desire what they have and it is making me angry and frustrated that I can't seem to achieve it!! God does not want us to waste our energies on those types of feelings!

When else can our innate, God-given characteristics turn to sin? How about the fact that we were designed to be creatures of worship? God created us to worship Him. At the core of our being, we desire to worship. But so often that desire gets misdirected to other things. Even atheists worship something. It may be jobs, money, spouses, children, clothes, television, sex, drugs/alcohol, sleep... it could be any number of things. And it's not always bad things. No one would tell you that you should not love, honor, and devote yourself to serving your spouse. But you certainly should not worship them in the sense of feeling they can do no wrong and they are your security in life. People are imperfect. They will always make mistakes, and in some way at some time they will let you down.

We were also created with a hunger. A hunger for the Lord. Everyone has it, but not everyone recognizes it for what it is. Instead, they try to fill that insatiable part of their souls with other things. Again, you see people modeling after the wrong things, worshiping the wrong things, and filling their lives with something that will never truly satisfy them. They will always be left hungry.

Even something like gossip! God calls us tell the world about Jesus. He create us with the ability to talk at length about someone else! To share the news with the world. The story of Jesus's death and resurrection is the best news there is for us to share! But instead, we use that ability to share the secrets of others and our unkind opinions. Even our design of loving others and being concerned for them can easily slip into gossip. How often have you started talking about someone's situation from a place of concern, possibly even as a prayer request, and found yourself getting a little bit of a thrill from sharing all the juicy details...maybe way more details than necessary for the prayer request? Yikes. I'll say it again--it's a slippery slope!

I feel like we can trace most sin back to misdirection. It's like God gives us these great gifts and we just mess them up! I know I do it all the time.

What do you think? Are there flaws or sins in your life that you can trace back as something with an originally good purpose and intent? Maybe if we can spend a little time reflecting on that and praying about it, we can start to redirect our intentions to God's desires for our lives. That definitely makes the thought of overcoming sin seem much more attainable and desirable to me, rather than thinking of just having to "do better" or stop this or that. Instead, let's seek God to ask how He wants us to use those things. They aren't really flaws if we use them as He wants! How cool is that??

Be blessed!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...