I'm sitting at the dining room table, catching up on some work and trying to savor my cup of coffee. There's no school today and I am steeling myself for the inevitable nonstop bickering between my kids. The two oldest are up, playing in Noah's room until they migrate into their playroom. I hear Noah, frustrated with the drawing activity on his Leapster, proclaim, "Zoe! I'm trying to draw you a Zebra but I just cant do it!" You see, little brother knows his sister's favorite animal has always been a Zebra. He's trying so hard to do something nice for her. Zoe, with patience that would rival most adults, responds like this,"That's okay. Maybe you should try to draw something you know how to draw, like a dog. You draw great dogs." Just like that, Noah's frustration melts away.
I marvel at the relationship my kids have with one another. They bicker so much. They yell, fight, sometimes hit (always an "accident" of course), and make one another cry more than any two people I know. However, they also comfort, soothe, encourage, and support one another in ways that warm this mom's heart. The picture below is one of my all time favorites. I had been trying to get a good picture of the kids in their Fourth of July outfits. Zoe was not feeling it. She was upset and frustrated about something I obviously didn't understand. Noah probably didn't understand either. However, his reaction to his sister was different than that of an aggravated mother. He grabbed her in a huge, genuine hug, and her reaction was just picture perfect. With that act, that love he showed her, Noah was able to turn the day around for all of us.
Our church is in the middle of a sermon series on friendship so I've been thinking a lot about what makes a good friend. Honestly folks, good friends are hard to come by. There aren't always very many people with whom we feel completely comfortable around. People that take us as we are, "wart's and all" and love us unconditionally. People who are honest and loving at the same time.
Zach and I understand that the path we've chosen in life, being a pastor in the United Methodist Church, means that we will move probably more often than we will like. I worry sometimes about how this lifestyle will affect our children. Seeing moments like I witnessed this morning, my kids truly being each other's best friends, eases my heart somewhat. I think we would all consider ourselves blessed indeed to have a friend like they have found in one another.
May we also take the time to consider, "How have I been a friend to someone lately." What act of genuine love and support have you shown to someone recently? I know I could take a lesson from my kids today.
Blessings to you and yours, thanks for reading.