One Thousand Gifts | 2.18

1 Timothy 2 | Verses 1-10 The Message
1-3 The first thing I want you to do is pray. Pray every way you know how, for everyone you know.
Pray especially for rulers and their governments to rule well so we can be quietly about our business of living simply, in humble contemplation. This is the way our Savior God wants us to live.
4-7 He wants not only us but everyone saved, you know, everyone to get to know the truth we've learned: that there's one God and only one, and one Priest-Mediator between God and us—Jesus, who offered himself in exchange for everyone held captive by sin, to set them all free. Eventually the news is going to get out.
This and this only has been my appointed work: getting this news to those who have never heard of God, and explaining how it works by simple faith and plain truth.
8-10 Since prayer is at the bottom of all this, what I want mostly is for men to pray—not shaking angry fists at enemies but raising holy hands to God. And I want women to get in there with the men in humility before God, not primping before a mirror or chasing the latest fashions but doing something beautiful for God and becoming beautiful doing it.

~Thousands of Gifts~
finding lego men in my kitchen drawers
getting a moment to play praise on the piano
watching Ezra spin around on the swings and jump off dizzy
seeing him so happy after a good night's rest and a healed cough
feeling so proud of Peter's newly acquired problem solving abilities when dealing with his little brother
laughing so hard with my eldest when he says "heehaw" and pretty soon we're laughing just for the sake of it
when hormones fade and days go smoothly
songs to love
two year olds who sing "this is my Father's world"
laughing about the letter P and "Peter's perfect pillow"
sunshine and warm enough to play outside without children clinging to me
plans to go sledding again
requests where mommy has a lot of leverage and four year old gets a consequence that fits the crime and then mommy explains to him that he's not going to get a "bail out plan" because I want him to remember this lesson for the future {*want the long story? see below}
reading The Very Hungry Caterpillar with the very hungry Buzzra
seeing Peter's creative mind working so hard, so creative, so remarkable
wiggling his first loose tooth and wanting to tell everyone {I think I'm more excited than he is, if that's possible!}
having such meaningful conversations with friends
Peter saying about Ezra "you're the silliest boy ever and I'm even sillier than you"
the gift of photography, the capture of beauty, the way it slows me down
a glow stick valentine from teacher "you make my heart glow"
filling their love cups and seeing their joy
evening walks with my husband
going to bed early
visiting the pet store to watch turtles {and some other stuff}
anticipating time away, on my own big adventure
heart shaped pancakes
gymnastics that makes his muscles so strong
that soft two year old skin
watching him play piano by ear, new songs every day

*The Bail Out Plan {or not}
I'm sure I'm making a big deal out of nothing here, but for crazy's sake, and for the joy of recorded memories -- here's the tale. 

Early this morning, Peter decides to play "garbage truck man" and pulls his dump truck around the house collecting things and dumping them onto the bathroom floor. At one point, he {sheepish face and all} mentions something about a mess in the bathroom. I'm pretty sure he did something that I won't be happy about, but I'm not making a huge deal of it. I'm just trying to get some clothes on after my shower. ;p

Finally, I go in there to check out the damages and find a big pile of wooden blocks, train tracks, hot wheels, a pair of shoes, a couple books, and a dirty dish rag.

I say -- "OK, that's a big mess. You'll need to put that all back where it goes."

hmmmm He doesn't think that's a super good idea.

Just a bit later, he decides he's ready to play with electronics and will I please get them down for him? *lightbulb comes on* "Sure Peter, you can play with electronics as soon as you clean up that pile." Love it when I have so much leverage. He totally set me up for that one.

He really wants to play with electronics. He really doesn't want to clean up the pile. "It's just too much work!" "Well, son, you should have thought about that when you were creating the mess."

He balks. And cries a bit. And whines. And asks if we can make a deal.

Hah. I talk about bail out plans and how they rarely encourage the party to make better choices in the future. So...nope. I'm not going to bail you out.

Finally he decides to get started. He gains momentum. He cleans up the pile. He feels really really good about himself. I congratulate him on cleaning up his own mess. He learns responsibility. He feels like he really deserves to play electronics now. He is happy. So is mommy.

Now, I'll hand this over to a much more politically minded person to make parallels and draw conclusions in the world of banks and bailouts around the world. Really, all I can handle is parenting right now. And just barely. Thankful for these moments of success in a world of chaos!