It’s the day most kids dread (even though they wake up early and excited), along with some parents (although I have seen posts about the excited parents who now have a quiet house). The day that ends the long summer nights of late night movies and fishing and games and whispers in the dark. Nights filled with only plans of fun the following day. No regard for schedules or lunches or stacks of papers. Or best of all…no plans. Sleeping until noon, without a care in the world.
The first day of school.
It’s the day that begins the alarm setting. The schedules. The lunches. The early bedtimes. The *extra* prayers for safety and wisdom. The dreaded homework hour. There’s really no stress quite as great. It’s the time many families recommit to eating more meals together. Eating healthier, or in my case, actually cooking. Like with pots and pans and other stuff. Hmm… I wonder if I still have those? Fortunately, tonight is “build your own sandwich” night. Crisis averted.
It’s also the time parents try their best to keep up with the laundry, because wearing dirty clothes in the summer is acceptable (well, in our house anyway), but wearing them to school is not. Unless it’s the end of the year and well… there’s lots of grace at that time from everyone. Thankfully. Because sometimes kids show up with un-brushed hair and teeth and breakfast on shirts. Or so I’ve heard. 😉
Funny how one day can make such huge changes in so many lives. It’s kind of like a do-over from all the things that didn’t go well in the previous year. The anticipation that things can be great. The hope. The newness of it all.
It reminds me of my journey as a Christian.
There’s something about being granted a do-over. An opportunity to admit what didn’t work. That just maybe I was…ahem…wrong. An opportunity to forgive or be forgiven. Forgiving myself and moving on is one of the most difficult things for me right now. Maybe because I’ve royally messed up lots lately. I’m blaming it on pre-menopause, except I’m really not old enough for that. Right?? Don’t even.
Forgiving others comes unusually easy for me, for the most part. Forgiving myself? Not so much. I allow others to be human, just not myself. My mistake will replay like a horror movie over and over and over…and over. Ugh. I have to remind myself of my Father who absolutely ADORES me… mistakes and all. Even when I lose my temper or act like an adolescent wanting her way. When my hair is not brushed, my clothes are dirty, and my teeth are not clean. He still looks at me with love and compassion. Sees past ALL of it.
I’m so thankful for a God who loves me, regardless.
A God that sees beyond the messiness.