Monday, April 29, 2013

When Ice Cream Hurts


We had planned to surprise them with this fun idea.
We were going to get toys picked up.
Get pjs on.
Brush teeth.
Pick out tomorrow's clothes.
Read the bible.
Sing and pray.

And then, 
out of the blue,
when they least expected it,
we were going to yell 
"Pajama Run".

We were going to tell bedtime to wait.
We were going to start off this week with a bang.
We were going to bless our kids with ice cream,
by climbing into the van,
in their jammies, 
after they'd already brushed their teeth, 
and drive to Sonic 
and let them order a treat.
Any treat they wanted.

Things didn't work out as we planned.
By the time we got past the singing and praying part, 
the kids' behavior had eliminated the planned blessing.
As much as we wanted to, we couldn't allow such a unique and rewarding opportunity to follow an hour of bad behavioral choices.

And my husband and I were sad.
We felt loss.
And I think the most difficult part was knowing the kids didn't even know what they were forfeiting.
They had no idea their decisions had relinquished a blessing.
Oh what could have been...and they didn't even know!

And I am humbled by the thought that I am exactly like my children.
I push back against God's better ways.
I rebel against His prescribed path.
I see only the life right in front of my face.
And sometimes, though I can't prove it, 
I am certain God has had an unexpected blessing waiting
and I chose badly.

I don't want to be a downer, 
but really...
how many blessings have I given up because I was 
too busy? too proud? too scared? 
too oblivious? too preoccupied?
too rebellious? too self-sufficient?

And I think, though I can't prove it, 
God must be sad in those moments.
Those unwitting eliminations of blessing.

He so wants to give to us.
More than we expect.
And sometimes, those gifts are dependent upon 
our willingness to submit first.

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