Raising tiny disciples

I did a month of daily posts on Facebook in May for foster care awareness. I enjoyed it so much. A few people learned a lot and enjoyed it too, and a few suggested I write a blog. I laughed, but in all honesty, I have always wanted to blog. I have so much to say about so many different things. So I signed up for one, and I have sat on it for almost two months, just wondering if I was crazy and just wasted my money. Then today happened.

I am very verbal about raising kids and how tiring that is. I remember Kinnley being little in the grocery store once having a full out toddler meltdown, and some older lady smiling at me saying “one day you will miss this, enjoy them when they are little”. That was the first of many times I have heard that since being a parent. I said to her, what I always say when people say this to me, NO, I will NOT miss this, I may miss her, and I may miss this season, but I will NOT miss this. She didn’t know how to respond to me, and most folks don’t, I kinda take that as a compliment. No one will ever convince me that I will miss those parts of parenting. It’s exhausting. They literally suck life out of you, you spend most of your day pouring yourself into them, and some days they give very little in return, especially when they are little. It’s funny how they can make you want to jump off a bridge sometimes, and then they fall asleep, and they are so freaking cute, you almost want to wake them up to play with them.

Crazy, that parenting thing…I wonder often if that’s how God feels about us, like does He watch us and think, today is the day they are going to do what I say, or do what I have taught, or notice what I have put in front of them, and then we don’t, and I wonder if He is exhausted with us, and then He looks at us in our quiet time, and thinks…Man how I love them. I know He knows what we are going to do, so probably not, but it is hard for me to imagine He doesn’t get annoyed with us…

Foster care is like that too, and adoption. I LOVE Dillon Rhyne, aka Dillon Pickle, if you read my Facebook posts. Some days she runs me ragged, just like all of them do. Sometimes more than others because she is a challenge all on her own to absolutely no fault of her own. Yesterday I told Matthew sometimes I wonder WHAT WERE WE THINKING!? We didn’t plan any of our girls, they were all surprises. Dillon, we literally chose, we willingly did this again, ON PURPOSE. Today I got reminded of why.

She is now old enough, and mature enough to go out of the nursery and into a Sunday school class. She has two teachers that are spectacular for that age group, and they amaze me with what she learns and talks about from class. Today they learned about kindness. They specifically talked about an older gentleman from our church (that I happen to adore), and how he was moving in with his son because he was older and needed someone to help him, they talked about having a special prayer for him. MY BABY, my sweet almost 3 year old wild, crazy, headstrong, beautiful little girl piped up and said “bring him to my mommy’s house, she will take care of him…..” she went on to throw in some toddler tales and jibberish, but y’all, SHE GETS IT!!!!! She knows that even though I am crass, and I say more than I should, and sometimes my filter is broken, and sometimes I am just flat out tired and ill as a hornet, I will take care of her, and of you, and of yours, and of theirs, because that is what this HOME does. WE LOVE, in the ugly, in the hard, in the middle of it all, we LOVE.

So when I am exhausted, and ready to throw it all away and lose my mind. I know that even in those times, they are still seeing the good times, and the purpose. We adults have a big task at hand raising these kids. We over complicate things. I don’t sit them down and talk to them about being a village. We don’t feel special, we don’t feel like we deserve an award, or even recognition for anything we do. This is just our life and the way we feel called to live it. We parents are always teaching, in all we say and do. And even in the mess of it all, and the poor job we feel we are doing, they see us, they hear us, and they get it….