I hate it when it happens. Once again, no self-control when it really counts. I know I’m gonna regret this later, but I do it anyway. I roar my terrible roar at some poor other who has dared to hurt my child in some way. It happened tonight. I failed the test.
Tonight was the first glow-in-the-dark Easter Egg Hunt on base, which sounds pretty awesome, right? Well, it would have been. Except…
It wasn’t very organized, and at one point in the waiting time (before the egg hunt was to begin), some brilliant person yelled out that if about half the kids could cross the field to the other side it would be great. So about half the kids (including Claire and Adam) started rushing across the field (NOT picking up eggs on the way across this full-sized football field). And then it happened: I felt like I was reliving my 5th grade Boomer Sooner reenactment back at Angus Valley Elementary School, only it wasn’t me. It was the fruit of my loins, and they had NO IDEA that they were in the middle of a Boomer Sooner rush. All the kids started furiously egg-hunting, except a few, mine included, who were obediently racing across the football field to position themselves on the other side. By the time Claire and Adam got to the other side of the field (come to find out, they had quickly negotiated a foot race which resulted in a tie), they turned around, only to see that almost all the eggs were already gone. Adam got 2 and Claire got 1. (In case you’re wondering about our other little egg-hunter, NOT surprisingly, Ben abandoned Keith and was quite the little Boomer Sooner, retrieving 13 eggs for himself.)
But Claire just totally lost it when she realized what had happened. We’re talking the works here–the face-contorting, crying, snot-slinging, “THAT WASN’T FAIR!” shouting works. She said she didn’t even care about the candy; she had really looked forward to the egg hunting race, the experience itself. And she was UPSET. REALLY UPSET. Adam was okay. (He’s pretty much always okay.) But I had me a devastated 7 year-old on my hands, one whom I love so, so, so much that her hurt somehow instantaneously translated through my nervous system into anger (maybe even rage?) on my part. I went and found that poor lady who was running the show, the one who told half the kids to cross the field, and I gave her a little piece of my mind, holding the hand of my bawling 7 year-old. My mom says I wasn’t as bad as I think I was. But on the inside, I was BAD. B.A.D. BAD. That poor lady was overwhelmed by what had just accidentally happened and no amends were made really. I kinda bombarded her, and there were several confused and unhappy parents circling her at the moment. I don’t know what I was hoping she’d do. Just fix it somehow. But she didn’t.
It didn’t take me long (like in the car on the way home) to realize that there were some really big lessons in this for both Claire and I. We came home and had a really important conversation about self-control (hers and mine both), and about being gracious when things don’t go your way. I have no qualms about being transparent with my kids, and declaring myself “chief of sinners” when we’re having these kinds of talks. I am no stranger to repentance and they know it. And tonight, after all was said and done, Claire crawled into my lap and wrapped her precious little arms around my neck and we both cried and repented to our Wonderful Heavenly Father, who happily forgave us because we are His daughters and because our sins have already been paid for by the blood of Jesus. We repented together, and asked God to help us the next time things don’t happen our way. So here I am, 30 minutes until it’s officially Easter here in Japan, after a crazy-busy couple of days when I’ve just barely even considered what He did for us that Good Friday, part of me wanting to turn my face away from what He suffered for me because it’s just too much, what He did. But now I’m listening. Now I’m remembering. And with all my heart I’m hoping and trusting and believing that “He who began a good work in me [and my daughter] will be faithful to complete it.” Oh, how He loves us. If you haven’t seen this before, I beg you to watch this and let Him melt away the hard places of your heart into love, love, love, love, love for your Beautiful Savior: