Faith & Family: If you don’t laugh you’ll cry, so choose to laugh
On Faith and Family
By Leah Gibson of Paso Robles
I have heard it said that as a parent you wear many hats. You’re a doctor, a teacher, a friend, a coach, a psychiatrist a podiatrist and occasionally are called upon by your children to be a ventriloquist or an optimist. Being new to the parenting game, my husband and I will be the first to admit that this whole “Jack of all trades, yet master of none,” thing is no joke.
We have two boys, thirteen months apart. Our oldest is two, our youngest is one. Our lives are blessed and filled with sweetness. We’re living the parenting dream of little pitter-patter feet running down the hall and cute little naked baby buns running through the house to avoid baths at all cost. We’ve got the chubby cheeks that rest on the floor as they play with their trucks and the sweet night time cuddles.
What we also have is a whopper sized case of CRAZY and with crazy, lots and lots of days filled with straight-up, miss the mark, F on your report card failures. Have you ever had one of those days where anything and everything goes wrong, you lose your temper, misplace your keys and step in yogurt? I’ve had so many of those days, my mother-in-law loving refers to them as “Charlie Brown Moments,” in which you’re literally two inches away from the football when Lucy sweeps it out from under your feet and you’re left lying on your back, trying to figure out what just happened.
Because I’ve had so many Charlie Brown moments, my husband and I have become self-proclaimed comedians and thereby have developed the mantra “if you don’t laugh you’ll cry, so choose to laugh.” This got me to thinking about all of you fellow Charlie Browner’s out there who could use some encouragement, who need to know that you’re not the only ones who have had a bad day, crawled into your sweats and accidentally eaten a gallon of ice-cream in order to heal from the trauma.
So, in order to make you feel better about your failures and Charlie Brown days, grab a cup of joe and get ready to read mine!
Over the last four months, our house has been under a major remodel. A close family friend was so kind as to lend us his trailer which we have parked in the front yard and will continue to live in until the remodel is completed.
It was Christmas week and we decided to rent a house in the country so the boys could run around and play and I was hard at work packing up our things to leave. We had just returned home from the grocery store and I brought my oldest son inside first and then retreated back to the car to bring in my other son. However, what I heard made me stop in my tracks. It was the sound of the lock on the trailer door clicking and lots and lots of giggles from the naughty face in the window. My two year old had locked me out! Frantically I felt around in my pocket for the keys… which were inside the diaper bag also locked in the trailer. I began to beat wildly on the window, but my son was too busy delightedly unwrapping snack after snack in the unmanned diaper bag.
After a few minutes, I decided to walk over to my dear friend and neighbor’s house to ask for help. Her parents were visiting from Ventura and they quickly came over to help as well. My neighbor was just beginning to dial the locksmith for me when, out of curiosity, her father jiggled the handle on the trailer one last time. The door flew open. My son had apparently unlocked the door on HIS terms during my thirty-second sprint to the neighbor’s house.
I thought long and hard about this very applicable life lesson last Sunday at Church as I watched my son challenge himself to see how many raisins he could successfully fit in his belly button. I thought about all the Charlie Brown moments in the last several weeks and all the chaos and all the failures and I thought about what happened at the trailer only days before. I thought about how much I’m sinfully like my son, locking God out and refusing to let Him in while I do my own thing only to realize how gracious He is to patiently wait for me to open up to Him when He already has the key.
Life might be crazy. It might be filled with joy or it might be filled with a whole lot of Charlie Brown moments, but at the end of the day, it doesn’t matter what we’re feeling or going through. Unless we open the door and walk in obedience and sweet fellowship with Christ, all the moments in life are meaningless. However, if we open up and draw near to Christ, even the hard days are beautiful because we have a friend that will never leave us or forsake us if we’ll only place our faith in Him.