I was in a hurry.
After spending the afternoon planting 108 (yes, you read that right) home-grown zinnia and sunflower plants, I was behind the proverbial “dinner eight ball” and was attempting to throw together a kale salad while in between loads of laundry.
I was rushing to squeeze it all in before a hungry baby stirred from her afternoon nap when I heard that little voice ask, “Mommy, can I have some snacks?”
“Sure, buddy. What would you like?”
“Mommy, I have some gummies?”
I ducked quickly into the cupboard, moving the loose bags of graham crackers and pretzels that were today’s pool snacks, and grabbed for the scissors. I was snipping away the top of the package for easy-eating when the bag slipped out of my hand and the gummies went flying.
Of course, the gummies didn’t fall neatly at my feet. They are gummies! They bounce. They roll. They disappear under the counter. They flee under the kitchen table. For crying out loud, they tumble to the most obscure parts of the kitchen only to be found by a dinner guest months later. “Ummm…is that a gummie underneath your refrigerator?”
In a huff, I yelled, “Shoot!!”
I was irritated, frustrated, and just waiting for Caden to let out a ROAR.
But that wasn’t what he did at all. In fact, he responded with GRACE.
As I scurried to find the run-a-way gummies, I heard him say, “Mommy, it’s okay. It’s just an accident. We pick them up. It’s okay.”
I was stunned. I was humbled. I was thankful.
Instead of meeting me with a ROAR, he met me with GRACE.
Until this afternoon, I have never heard him say those words to ME. Oh, he’s said them before, but he’s always said them for his own sake.
Pee on the floor, a dropped glass, splashed water outside the tub, soap on the mirror, food on the floor…you name it and he’s super quick to say, “Mommy, it’s just an accident.” And I’d like to say that I always respond with GRACE rather than a ROAR every time he has an accident, but I don’t.
As I went back to finishing up last minute dinner preparations, I couldn’t help but
think of the many ways God has recently been whispering (and even yelling) to my heart about my grace issues. In fact, the spilled gummies were just a continuation of this recent curriculum that God has been constructing for me.
For real, God has been POUNDING this issue of grace in my life.
The chapters of this curriculum MUST be titled:
Chapter 1: Jessica’s need for grace
Chapter 2: Jessica’s refusal to accept grace.
Chapter 3: Jessica’s desire to grant grace.
Chapter 4: Jessica’s resistance to extend grace.
I could go on and on and on with chapter titles and a whole slew of examples of how God has recently been attempting to teach me this concept of grace, but I will spare you all the details.
Suffice to say…
I fail. I fall. I flounder. I am a hot mess.
Others fail. Others fall. Others flounder. They are a hot mess.
In my short 30 years of life, I don’t think there is anything that has drop-kicked me more than my recent realization of my desperate need for grace.
Oh, how I need grace. Oh, how others need grace. Oh, how I long for my children to embrace this concept of grace WAY earlier than I have.
I want my children to realize that they are people in need of grace living with others in need of grace.
I want them to realize that they fall short, and they live with others who fall short.
I want them to know that there is grace when we are hard on ourselves.
I want them to know that there is grace when others are hard on us.
I want them to know that without grace, God would be hard on all of us.
I want them to know that WITHOUT GRACE, we ALL are a bunch of spilled gummies