oh snap..a most excellent phrase.

This week the kids and I are reading a book called Kisses from Katie. This book is about a 19 year-old-girl who goes to Uganda  to do a 3 week mission trip and then ends up moving there indefinitely. (In a nutshell)

It is an oh snap book.

Oh SNAP is a phrase brought into our home by TC and Celee…our teenager and almost-teenager respectively. It seems to be synonymous with Wow! or Shoot! (I think) In our house, we know we have a really good book when we hear Oh SNAP! coming from the teenager-ish children. It has kind of taken place of a good ol’ Amen! 

Yesterday we read:

“Every day, we have a choice. We can stay nestled in our safe comfortable places…We can let fear of something that really is small compared to the greatness of God cripple us. Or we can take a risk, do something to help someone else, make a person smile, change someone’s world. Life to the fullest exists. It’s available. All we have to do is decide to get up and embrace it.” -Katie Davis

And, just in case I wasn’t clear before, this is where TC and Celee turn and say “oh SNAP!” Which in this case, (I think) is an excellent mixture of:
1. WOW! – because Katie just left her entire life to serve street children in a village in Uganda.
2. SHOOT! – because now that it is out there, Mom is going to wonder what exactly we can do to exit this “comfortable place” Katie talks about…

They know me so well.

So, to my endless list of things I want my children to know and do, such as:

Brush your teeth
Wear socks. No, not the ones from yesterday!
Put on deodorant!
Clean your room
Complete your lessons
No punching
No biting
No nose picking!
No gassing Mom in the car!!
Put away your laundry
Wash your hands
Take a shower…I know you had one yesterday, but you need to wash off the dirt from today! 
Be kind
Be helpful
Be truthful
Be a hard worker…

I have now added:

Get out of your comfort zone and confront your fears

Adding these two items makes me want to vomit a bit. Because sometimes fear rules over me.

I don’t want to encounter spiders, centipedes, roaches, licorice, papaya, gas station restaurants or gas station bathrooms…Cold places, woods in the dark, weird smells, singing in church, contagious viruses…anything that makes me remotely anxious…I avoid all of these things as much as I possibly can. It looks so ridiculous in writing.

And all of this really just makes me a weenie.

Anyway, my parenting must-do list is an ongoing, ever-changing, constantly-challenging list. And the more I add, the more I realize the list applies to me too…and I really hate that. Because I want to mold my children into the non-weenie person I wish I was without having to do any work myself. Because I want to be comfortable. I want to stay home, read a book, pay my bills, and ignore everyone else.

But I can’t.

I can’t because that is not what I am called to do, I can’t because I have children watching me, I can’t because there are much bigger issues at hand than my selfish want to be comfortable…like AIDS, like starving, orphaned children, like homelessness, joblessness, hate, prejudice, death by preventable, treatable illness…

How can I teach my children to be helpful, if I am not?
How can I teach them to be kind, if I am not?
How can I teach them to work hard, if I do not?
How can I teach my children to think and live outside of their comfort zone if I don’t join them?

I can’t.

Oh snap.

TC and Celee

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