"Dad is being so silly!" Reese yells. And the holding back really isn't that much fun and I am missing the gift wrapped, hand-delivered moment:
You have been cordially invited to laugh really hard and make a memory...right now.
This is (usually) when I come to. Snap back into being a human and not a kill-joy.
This is not always natural for me.
Because I am capable of over thinking and over analyzing every last thing and some days my relentless, high expectations trick me into thinking there isn't room or time to be so silly.
In my uptight, parental "what if I don't raise 'em right" moments, I can crush what is real in search of something elusive and stuffy and other. Like, let's just say, at the dinner table? Aren't we suppose to talk about character and Jesus and reinforce all the day's learning and teach them how to pray, eat nicely, say "yes please", and look people in the eye when they speak?
Go ahead, feel the crushing weight....
Then enter in God's awesome sense of humor and master plan when he matched me with my mate:
this light- hearted, grace-loving, non-wavering family man.
He plows the soil in this home-- creates fertile ground for grace to take root, for love to grow. He reminds me we are doing just fine and that this home is called to be a place of refuge and goodness and joy. He reminds me of their smallness ... and that we are not in the business of grooming little pharisees.
He reminds me to put away the parenting book and just chill out. He reminds me that real learning and true obedience run over from little hearts that are loved and free and safe to just be. Taught and trained, yes. But freed up?