What would you do when your seven-year old young’un has done “run oft” when he’s supposed to be doing his school lessons?
Yeah, me too.
What if you find him curled up on the couch reading a book?
Yeah, it’s a little harder to be firm, but still, he needs to work on his handwriting and his math, right?
Yes. He does. Trust me on this.
What if said book that he is curled up with is the Good Book?
I know. I know. I got nothing.
I did tell him to please put it away and come back to work on his writing. After all, adjectives are fun too.
He turned over with his Bible, and said, “Oh man, I want to read the Bible. I want to see what happens. Did you know that God just said it, and it happened. He said words and they showed up–‘Light!’ ‘Animals!’ ‘Plants!’ ‘Oceans!’ Wow!”
Oh y’all. How do you argue with that?
Finally he did come back to working on writing his sentences all about Star Wars (thankful for the soul that came up with the idea of Math, Reading, and Writing workbooks that are Star Wars-centric! No way she’s getting paid enough–and yes, I’m sure it’s a woman–a woman who has pulled her hair out trying to get her child to quit talking about Star Wars and get.his.schoolwork.done). He circled the nouns and underlined the adjectives like a pro. Finally.
Still, he loves to talk while he’s doing all of this. This little guy who did not talk much and had me quite worried about it until he was well over two years old.
He’s been making up for it ever since.
Which, don’t get me wrong, I love hearing his voice. And his thoughts. It’s just that when his 9-year-old sister is sitting next to him trying to focus on word problems and times tables and begging me to buy her ear plugs…..it’s not conducive to the “happy happy happy” place I like to be.
So today he was writing and talking–not both at the same time mind you–and he says, following up on his question from earlier about did Jesus die on a Sunday, “Jesus got betrayed because his friend thought that God was going to change things in the world with love.”
Yeah he did.
The way my little guy said “love.” I realize his perception of the story is a little south of standard but still, I almost started bawling. For all of his chattering, there’s some deep stuff flowing in there too. And it’s not all Star Wars either.
Because then he said, “I love reading the Bible. It’s why I’m a new person everyday.”
For the love.
What do I even do with that?
Say, “Hush up now and finish your schoolwork”?
No. You just can’t, can you?
We have days like this. Days when things are good, even if the book learnin’ doesn’t necessarily go as planned.
When my children are thinking and the thoughts they share are fascinating.
And then there are days like yesterday (which usually outweigh the ones like today) when he was writing his Star Wars sentences and every time he was supposed to use the letter “b” he wrote it “B.”
“Cooter, why are you using capital B’s everywhere? Those are supposed to be lower case. Do you see that?”
He nodded as his tongue worked the side of his mouth and he continued writing.
“Yes ma’am.” He kept writing. “But the big ones are more fun to write.”
Since you put it that way…..
This raising children is surely an adventure and teaching them at home is sometimes like an adventure on steroids. All in the same day I get to hear the history of the world according to Star Wars, how the world was actually created according to the Good Book, how many Legos it takes to build a cantina from Star Wars, moans and groans about one more page of writing or math (depends on the day), and that people were afraid of how love would change the world.
That last one–I think some folks still are, don’t you? Afraid of loving all like God and how that might change the world?
But that’s a story for another night.
Tonight I’m thankful for a day full of good things–of teaching my children and seeing some of it stick, of working alongside them to clean up or prepare a meal, of listening to their jokes, hopes, dreams, silly stories, and fears. I give thanks that I often learn more than I teach when I hang out with this crew. That their hearts and minds seem to be growing in the right direction–that means everything to me. And that they know that love can change the world?
That. Right. There.
Now if only I can get him to give up those “fun to write” capital B’s.
Baby steps. baby steps.
Love, the world-changing kind, to all.