So, my family gave up madness (anger and yelling) and shopping for lent. And we are on day fifteen now. Which means we have twenty five more days to go.
Last night two mommas at the soccer fields were laughing at me because I had planned to go to Target, evil of all evils for those not allowed to shop, to look for shoes for my kiddos. They do need shoes, so that purchase fits within the rules. Of course the mommas were laughing and accusing me of getting the shoes to have something - anything - to buy. If I look inside myself, they might be a little bit right. Yet, honestly, my kids have asked for new shoes. And in their case, it is a reasonable request. They each have two pairs - one pair of athletic shoes, and one pair of soccer cleats. Kelly has some cowboy boots, some rain boots, and some hand me down crocs, but for Key that really is it. We got those athletic shoes last September, so for almost 200 days he has worn only one pair of shoes. Christmas Day, Thanksgiving, Sunday church, birthdays, school days, park days, rainy days, lazy days - one pair. I'd say we are getting our money's worth. And yet, Nike did a bang up job, because those shoes are still good. Nice tread. No holes. Faded. Dirty. But worthy of more wear. So why, during lent, do I go out and buy them shoes? Because. I want them to take off their socks. I want them to walk outside in this beautiful spring weather and feel warm earth between their toes. I want them to partake in the gift of nature that God himself is giving us.
Lent is a discipline, yes. But just that. A discipline. Not new rules that can't be broken even in the face of a gift from God. God's gifts - well - they are to be taken and celebrated, a remedy for our tired and weary souls. Never, ever, to be ignored.
So last night I went to Target, and I got them flip flops or crocs. One new pair each. And on Sunday, a feast day, I plan on ordering summer athletic sandals for them too. I think Jesus is okay with that.
Now for how we're doing with anger, well, that's another story....