Ah, Superheroes–we all love them. Have you ever noticed discounted costumes sitting on the store racks? Well, my husband did last night and sprung for three new outfits for our boys. Two ninja suits and one Captain America get-up traveled home in a plastic bag. One of them came with an extra long foam sword and wouldn’t you know, it took less than five minutes for it to disappear after our six-year-old received it? Poor kid. Our sixteen-year-old ninja couldn’t help but stir him up into a frenzy. Little does he know, that I’m not going to grow lax with our family standards for our youngest ones, so the oversized thing is now tucked away in my bedroom.
After all that happened yesterday, today our six-year-old regained another opportunity to wear his ninja costume–minus the sword. The new Captain America costume, dripping with an extra dose of brute strength, has our four-year-old son strutting around like a peacock. He’s puffed up so much, that today he did something very uncharacteristic. The details are a little sketchy so all I know is that he–being Captain America–socked his six-year-old ninja brother and the ninja accidentally bumped the captain in the nose–or was it the other way around? In all honesty, the facts are a blur. It is always hard for this family to keep a straight face after the little ones confess. Yes, they were split apart. Yes, they lost their superhero suits until further notice and yes, now they are the best of buddies. So much so, that Timothy has extended a truce to Joshua by offering his two size smaller footsie pajamas to wear to bed tonight.
Even though I now cringe at the idea that our boys didn’t restrain themselves from punching each other and I face temptation to ask where I went wrong in my parenting skills–these will end up being the memories that we will continue laughing about while sitting around the dining table. These are the memory making moments that are revealing to our oldest ones how fun and memorable it is to live in a larger family. I think I laugh much more now that I’ve got a few years of parenting behind me and I must say that it is a joy to share these experiences with our teens. It’s also fun to point out to them how they too made some of the similar choices when they were that age. Yes, some days are pretty hard, but it is a gift from God to able to cherish these moments and invest into our future adults. They are so worth the sacrifice and the constant outpouring of energy.
We parents aren’t likely wearing capes around the house, but let me just say, I think it’s the best and most heroic opportunity to glorify God that we are entrusted with on this planet. Stone by stone, we have been given what we need to build up amazing and faithful kids for God’s glory. It is said, that kids don’t come with an instruction manual but I say we’ve had the perfect instruction manual long before they were ever created. I believe that the Bible, God’s living and breathing Word, has everything we need in becoming the well equipped, super-parents that we will ever hope to become. I know that it makes all the difference in my life as a parent–especially on those days when I feel tangled in my cape. God’s word comforts, it strengthens, it guides, it fills me with joy, and fills me with hope to press on. Being a parent is hard and has a way of revealing our personal imperfections, but today we can become the parents our kids need by God’s grace! With God, all things truly are possible.
“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” Philipians 4:4-8