April Fools Day. Could it be a day for telling truth, for being crazy in grace?
Jesus welcomed the children. We all remember that story well. The disciples, men caught up in the ideas and ideals of their man-centered world, wanted to shoo them off into ambiguity, to keep the children unimportant and disposable. But Jesus wouldn’t have it.
We don’t know the names of the children who’s heads rested under the blessing-hand of the Savior. I think this is by design, because we know in hearts that read the message and not just the words of the story that those children are our children.
Those children clamoring to receive the blessing–they are us. You and me.
Poppies don’t unfurl demurely, as the rose, or uncurl like the clematis and daisy. Poppies flash and pop and flare their skirts like flamenco dancers. They sail on wind and hold the thunderstorm rains with gentle hands. They surprise.
Of course, I sat there wishing it were me in the papery gown, making small talk with the technician, feeling the needles press through my skin and tissue with their numbing serum. I wish she were in the waiting room, or better yet, off at school or work or eating too many Oreos with her roommates. I wish she hadn’t felt a lump or spent time searching the internet for possible diagnoses. I wish cancer wasn’t even a fleeting thought in her beautiful brain.
Nothing you do as a parent will shield you from this. Your adorable, sheltered, pink-cheeked cherubs will fling crap at you, they will blame you, hate you perhaps, be embarrassed by you, ignore you, lie to you, call you names. And when they’re grown you will one day wish for the easier battles when your kindergartner packs her Barbie suitcase and decides to run away. You will long for the day you found scribbled, torn and smudged notes hidden in the corner of the room under a pile of stuffed animals, notes that say, I hate mom, she is mean and I hate her.
But you will never give up on them. You will never stop loving them more. You just want another opportunity to give them grace.