What to do? We did the only thing to do. We got busy. And it was a sweet time.
Sure the kids were doing homework they'd rather not be doing. Sure we'd all have been happier down on the couch laughing at Looney Toons together or, better yet, sitting round the fire pit roasting marshmallows. Sure Eric and I were being asked multiple questions by multiple children all at the same time. Sure we were running from desk to desk and they each had to be patient till their turn came.
But in the midst of that hour and a half or so something occurred to me, something I ponder often but have not (yet) been able to express in words. There was chaos, but no tension. The situation was busy, but not stressful. That describes our reality more often than not (you did not hear me say "always"!)
The question is...
The answers are more of a book than a blog post (wink) but have everything to do with love, with grace, with HOPE... These truths are not peripheral, they are life-changing-family-changing-world-changing realities. Peace within becomes peace without and peace all around. That becomes the norm. And when the chaos does become tense and the busy-ness does become stressful, it's the exception - it's unsettling (as it should be). So we shed Light on that, we lift that up to Our Good God and to one another, we inspect it, examine it, and quickly get about the business of righting it. Which usually involves someone (read me) giving up the idea that the chaos is supposed to be controlled. Funny how those open hands apply to every aspect of life, right down to homework.
I'll close by sharing an email I recently received from a mother we met for the first time at a wedding a few weeks ago. I had no idea at the time that our quirky, complicated family had left this impact, but it swelled my heart to hear it...
Your patience with your children was a real testament to me . God has blessed yall with an amazing bunch of kids, and a heart of compassion and patience. Often times in the day to day I want everything to go as planned. Spending time with yall reminded me to just relax, give (her child) some trust, be patient and to roll with the situation. Thanks for this reminder and encouragement that you didn't even realize you were sharing.