My Teachable Moment

It was one of those moments that I wanted to get just right.  My son, age seven, popped into the car after school and said, “Mommy, I’m popular!”  I said, “Oh?”  “Yes, I’m popular!”, he said with excitement.

I paused for a moment and asked, “What makes you popular?”  He said, “You know…when you are good at things and people know you.”  I paused again, searching for words, and then said, “Well, you know being popular is not the most important thing in life.  Do you know what matters more than anything?”

In my mind, I was already rehearsing how loving others, being kind, sharing your gifts, not judging others, being a good friend, and being popular for being someone who causes others to feel accepted and loved, matters the most.  Until this time, being popular, getting picked on, and other social issues had not entered into his first grade existence at his smallish elementary school.  I had already decided that I was going to push person-hood before popularity.  This was a teachable moment opportunity, and I was not going to let it slip by!

I asked again, “Do you know what matters more than anything?”

In his sweet little voice, he said, “God.  God matters more than anything.”

Stunned, I sat there.  Smiled a bit, and gathered my thoughts.

I said, “You are right.  God matters more than anything, and you know, God wants us to be kind, generous, to be a good friend, to not judge, and to love others.”  He said, “I know, Mommy, I know.”

And there it was….

my teachable moment....

my gentle reminder….

my continual realization that while I have so much to teach my children,

in return,

they have more to teach me.375917_341839525907009_1617492878_n



Everyone is Lovable

Sitting around our slightly scuffed up and very used dinner table, my husband asked our son what he learned at school.  Scooping up a fork full of red beans and rice, our son said,

“We learned that everyone is lovable.”

My husband and I glanced at each other with both surprise and gratitude.  I took a bite of my cornbread, chewed as quickly as possible, and said to him,

“That is a great lesson.”

I thought about his statement throughout the night.  At what point do we start to not think this way?  When do we decide that some people are more lovable than others?  In our adult experience, why is it that we forget this lesson?  Why is it that children must teach it to us?  

As a Christian, I have found myself seeing others with blurred vision.  There are certainly people who I would never want to surround myself with, and yet, perhaps these people are the exact ones that Christ sought so desperately.

We teach our children to love without borders, to be kind without restrictions, and to give without expectation; yet, we often do not live up to the standard that we teach. And yet, it takes a simple elementary school lesson to stir my heart upon these things.

Since becoming a parent, I have felt drawn towards the refining messages and lessons learned from watching them grow up.  Our children teach us so much – just like we taught our parents, and so on.  I thank The Lord for these lessons, second chances at getting it right, and tender moments when you just know that the words coming from the lips of your child are totally meant for you.

I’ve been asked how I feel about certain political issues, social debates, and hot topics that make up our days.  If I want to live a life aligned with the heart of Christ, then, I choose to leave my answer at a place of love.  I’ve decided that nothing else matters except a heart that loves, a heart that forgives, and a heart that admits we are all in need of love.

I’m so thankful that my son walked away from school (public school, I might add), with the reminder that everyone is lovable…Everyone – rich, poor, clean, dirty, shameful, unashamed, popular, unpopular, black, white, Muslim, Christian, Hindu, Buddhist, gay, straight, smart, not smart….the list goes on.

Thank you, Lord, for finding me lovable in the moments I’ve deserved it the least, the moments I’ve needed it the most, and in that incredible moment You drew a last painful breath on the Cross.

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, – Galatians 5:22