Butterfly Sparks Designs

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

first day of school 2007/2008

today was the girls' first day of school for the 2007/2008 year. anna katherine is officially in pre-k, and sara is in the 3 year old class. as you can see from the photos, the girls were ready for their big day. i made sure they both wore pigtails so they could play hard and not sweat too much. :)
two of the photos are with the girls teachers, who i'm praying will fall in love with my girls. the first day went well- so far so good.
p.s. the first wesley went well today also. ptl!

Monday, August 13, 2007

mean parents stink

ok, so i will admit i'm not the kindest person around. i'm not mean, but i'm sure when someone asks you to describe me the first adjective you would think of would probably not be "sweet" or "gentle".. and i'm ok with that.. because ultimately i don't think those are my most prominent attributes. i love justice more than mercy (and i'm hoping God will do a little reshaping here). i scream on occasion and lose my temper (shocker), but i'm beginning to think i could write a book on how to be a fabulous parent. NOT because i'm so fabulous, but because i know i'm not as TERRIBLE as a LARGE number of parents i observe on a daily basis.. i continue to be amazed at how hateful and abusive some parents are to their children! i know this is basically my second blog about mean parents, but for some reason God keeps showing me the brokenness of people and the way they injure their kids in the process of living life the way they want. i'm wondering what He's wanting to teach me in this season about people, parenting, kids, brokenness, etc. it seems that at least ONCE EACH DAY (which i think is insane) i observe some parent (usually the mom) screaming some incredibly hurtful, rude, outrageous poison to her child/children- threatening to "knock them into tomorrow" and such. and it never fails to shock me for several reasons, one big reason being they are in a PUBLIC place screaming at a small child. which makes me think it must be ten times worse at their home. in fact yesterday at walmart grocery, i heard a mom cheering on a another mom who was disciplining her children harshly. and the disciplining mom replied, "wait til your kids get in jr. high- they'll try to tell you you can't punish your kids anymore." one aisle later she was screaming again.
what is wrong with people??? our society scares me. and makes me run to God. asking Him for more grace- grace to love my girls more, grace to deal with anger without scarring my children in the process, grace to discipline appropriately, grace for the kids who live in fear and shame, grace for parents to see what they are doing and grace for their change. God's birthing something within me regarding all of this- i'm waiting to see it unfold.

Monday, August 6, 2007

beach baptisms

yesterday we had 7 baptisms of Wesley peeps at the ocean. it was such a gift to be able to baptize seven students and staff members we have had the priviledge of knowing, investing into, and loving over the past few years! it was a beautiful day at cocoa beach with not a rain cloud in the sky- and for those of you who know august afternoons in florida, that in itself was a gift from the lord.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

don't you hate it when...

you think of the appropriate thing to say about 10 minutes too late?? this was my experience today. i'm feeling a bit blue- it has been raining all day in orlando, on top of the fact that i'm wrestling with my response (or lack thereof) to something i saw. i was checking out at the gap outlet and there was a mother with an adorable little girl behind me. the little girl was probably 2 or 3 years old, and she was sitting quietly in her stroller. next thing i know, i see the mother take off her sandal and slap the crap out of her daughters leg with the bottom of the shoe. the pop was REALLY loud, and her daughter started wailing. i could see a huge red mark on her leg. i looked wide eyed towards them, and somewhat turned back towards the front. (i was next up to a register). the lady directly behind the offending mother began muttering under her breath, and we looked at each other with expressions of disappointment and shock. the mother then says something to the effect of "i believe that parents have the right to discipline their children the way they want to." to which the other woman continued to mutter and i just stood there. she was basically saying that primarily to the other lady, because of her muttering. in the midst of this, i'm praying, "Lord, what should i do? do i say anything? and if i do, then what?" part of me is thinking that maybe she didn't intend to pop her so hard. if i'm honest, i would admit to giving a spanking or two that came off much harder or louder than i intended. so maybe that's what happened, right? but then i'm thinking that she surely had done that before, because who in the world would even think of taking off a shoe and hitting someone with it? she must have had experience in spanking with that tool before. these are some of the thoughts that go coursing through my mind as i stand there and say nothing. and the other lady really didn't say anything either.
now, of course, as soon as the lady strolls off, i think of PLENTY of things i could have said. like confronting her distorted logic that parents have the "right" to discipline their children any way they see fit. hmmmm. really? so it's ok to take a cigarette and put a burn mark on my child because i have the right to discipline the way i see fit? that's just silly. there is such a thing as RIGHT and WRONG- APPROPRIATE and INAPPROPRIATE. the logic that says you decide for yourself what is right and wrong is ridiculous. maybe that's why there are children starved, malnurished, beaten, abused EVERYDAY in the good ole USA. people think it's ok to do what they want to whom they want, and they have no fear of consequences. immediate or eternal. i'm mean, really, they'll probably get away with it just fine. at least on this earth. as i think about my response and the folks around me today, and i know that i am part of the problem. my silence.
i'm not trying to be overdramatic, but this has been sobering experience. and to my defense, it was a bit of a gray area. if it had been severe or obnoxious abuse, there is no question i would have intervened. but it wasn't and i didn't. and maybe i should have anyway. i'll just continue to ask the lord for grace today in how to process this piece of life.