My sister Deanna called last Thursday to check in on me. I was downstairs in my office reviewing notes for my book signing talk called "Experiencing God's Greater Yes" at Epiphany Catholic church that evening. I heard my daughter pick up the phone from the kitchen.
When Maddi discovered who was on the line she exclaimed, "Auntie, I'm making a mess!"
I bolted upstairs to find Maddi on the floor with numerous paper towels diligently working to wipe up a large splat of glittery, non-water soluble, marker-tube paints–a gift from a very kind babysitter. Her efforts, however, were smearing the accurate description of the word "mess" into an even bigger issue.
I glanced over at Jordan who was nailing a picture he had designed into our living room wall. Quickly assessing the damage, I counted approximately ten nails.
"Jordan," Not even knowing where to begin, I said, "You need to ask permission before you use things such a tools in our house."
"I did," he replied, "I asked God and he said YES!"
How is a mom supposed to answer that?
My eyes glanced over at all the additional dents that had been made with each hammer stroke. I looked at my son and he looked at me almost like he was reading my mind and told me, "Oh, Mom, the dents aren't that bad are they? Just remember, God is in control!"
"Yes," I had to agree with my son. Digging deep for some mommy wisdom I added, "God also wants us to take care of and respect our property."
"Okay," Jordan nodded, "Can I have a second chance? Because God is the God of second chances."
He was making this harder and harder for me to discipline. Who knew Sunday school could work so well for rebuttals.
"Yes, Jordan," I said, "And, Mommy is the Mommy of second chances…not third or fourth or fifth ones!"
I looked over at his sister who had decided to use the very same alibi as her brother and without hesitation blurted in one breath, "I-painted-a-picture-for-Grandma-Bonnie-and-God-made-me-do-it!"
I thought about the talk I had yet to give that night. Wouldn't it be great if we could all experience God like children…in such vivid and real ways? Completely trusting and relying even in (especially in) the midst of a mess? Taking hold of our second chances for the greater yes God has in mind for us.