Last Friday night there was a banquet for the teens final gathering and the theme was the 50's. The girls had fun dressing in polka dot dresses and doing their hair up in pony tails and with curly ends. A lot of the boys had leather jackets on, jeans, and t-shirts, but in reality, they didn't look that much different than what I see today. It is funny how the styles come back around every few years or so. It was so much fun to watch the teens enjoy themselves, and a group of them went bowling afterwards. I just sat back and filled my heart with warm memories as I watched my oldest enjoy his last official teen activity before he graduates. The other children had a blast too, but there is something special in watching your oldest child blossom into a young man whom God is shaping to be someone like Him. I pray he will always seek the Lord in all he does, and puts God first. I have been so busy getting things ready for the big day that I have not stopped to focus on just what it all means. I have a feeling I am going to be a mess during the ceremony, but it is only because I love him so much and do not want things to change. But for now, I am going to post some of the pictures from the banquet. Enjoy!
She said she had been sleeping on the couch. The giant silverfish, which had taken up residence in her bedroom had chased her away. My husband, Joe, who is an exterminator, told her he would be happy to come and spray her house for her, assuring her that it would take care of the problem.
"Oh, no, I don't want you to spray him!" she told him over the phone. "That isn't necessary! Can't you just use a little trap to catch him and let him go outside?"
My husband paused for a moment. This was a request that he had never heard before. Using a 'have a heart' trap for a squirrel or even my son Caleb would be reasonable, but using one for an itty bitty insect, well, that was another story! I don't even think they make a trap that small! He was very kind to the lady, as he explained that it was not done that way. He told her that if the silverfish came back then she could call him again and he would come and take a look.
"You don't mind if I call again?" she asked him.
"No, I don't mind," he said smiling. If only all his customers were that easy to deal with. She certainly made his day. He came home and related this story to me and I could not help but chuckle over the lady's request. Trapping an insect in a tiny insect trap! If only it was as simple as that! All the work of equipment prep, careful chemical measurement, filling water buckets for mixing, driving mile after mile around Connecticut to get to his destinations, and hundreds of calls from customers with questions about mice, ticks, bedbugs, bees, ants, and other general pests. Thousands of hours go into this business and life is very busy and complicated with all the details.
Isn't that a lot like life? For a mother, whose job is 24/7, with no rest or breaks in her busy days when she has little ones, she finds that her days seem to last forever. Her children are always hungry and it seems like her cupboards are always bare, making another trip (with five squirmy children in my case) to the grocery store necessary. Toys lay scattered all over the floor and there is always that one her foot seems to find when she is walking the baby in the middle of the night. It is the work of all mothers: preparing their children for the next step in life; filling buckets of love and passing on wisdom and knowledge that they will need when they leave the nest; driving mile after mile to take her children to sports, church/school activities, jobs, and friend's houses, and hundreds of calls to grandmothers for advice about rashes, cough remedies, and what to do about pee stains in the carpet. Thousands of hours go into this business of raising a family and there are many details that cannot be missed.
In exactly two weeks from tonight, I will be the mother of a graduate, and a major phase of life will be over - well, at least for one of my five children. I cannot help but wonder if there are any details we may have missed in the raising of our first son. I feel bad because the first child is always the learning curve, the guinea pig of a family. As a new mom and dad, we really did not know anything about taking care and raising a child. God gave us wisdom along the way, and yes, we made many mistakes, learning tough lessons every step of the way. Yet looking back I see how God was shaping us, as well as shaping JJ, molding him, making him to be who he is today. He has great dreams of taking business in college, to learn how to be a successful businessman, and be a good leader. He was never one to want to lead, being an introvert, and wanted to live alone, work on his computer, and order pizza for every meal inside his home, never having to leave. Seeing this major change in him has been encouraging and exciting to watch as he has become the young man he is now. God is doing a work in his heart, which I can see as he asks questions, making the beliefs he has learned, and is learning, his own, and setting his mind to serve the Lord however He wants him to. I know our work is not over - it is only just beginning. We need to pray for him now more then ever as he makes some of the biggest decisions of his life. We need to pray that he will continue to seek the Lord for guidance and always have a soft, teachable heart.
Our five children are indeed a blessing to us. True, like I said above, sometimes we wish we had a 'trap' for one of our sons, who seems to have a knack for pushing all our buttons at once, but I would not trade any of them for the world. They are gifts from the Lord and it is days like these that I love listening to them play outside together, even as teenagers, enjoying the beautiful weather and sunshine. These are the times that I take and store in my heart as precious memories, knowing that they all will be graduated, grown up, and gone way too soon. So, don't take the easy route by using a little trap; take the extra time, make the extra effort, and put in all the work necessary to see a job completed the proper way. God will reward you in the end.