When I was a kid, my mom rarely cooked a meal on Saturday. First, it was our day to clean house and she was too tired to cook; and second there were leftovers in the fridge. Still, every Saturday my brother would ask what we were having to eat and my mother would reply, "Skip its." At this point both of us would head to the fridge and stare into that endless abyss paroozing over it's contents. Some items we ignored like macaroni and tomatoes and salmon patties. The first time around they are great! But reheated the macaroni turns to rubber, and the salmon has the smell and consistency of something the dog threw up. Skip it. Some items we fought of over like meatloaf with corn. My Dad swears meatloaf is best on the third day. Slice it and put it on toasted bread and you'll think you're a king. Still good. Any soups and stews were considered still good. Beans and cornbread were a staple of my childhood and we could eat them for a week. Never goes bad. Still good. Add ketchup to the beans and honey to the cornbread and a whole new meal appears. Still good.
I will never forget the time my brother and I were peering into the frigid abyss and spotted leftover cherry cheese cake. This is a family favorite and finding it was like finding gold. My brother grabbed it and headed to the table, unfortunately the constitution of the pie pan gave way and the whole thing fell to the floor. We locked eyes for few seconds. Panic and sadness echoed between us. Our thoughts must have shot back to our previous task of cleaning the kitchen floor (it was Saturday) and we declared simultaneously, "Still good." We scooped it up in the pan that now looked like a silver taco shell, took it to the table and ate it. Still good.
For the next few weeks we'll post some blogs that have previously been run over at www.Renovare.org. These are some "still good," topics that might be helpful to think about again.
Solitude: Quiet, Alone, Time with God
I’m sure it started with a smirky look and words with tone. But the fight was on. Two sibling daughters throwing down over a Lego. Yes, a Lego. I was upstairs buried alive by laundry, when the commotion filtered up to me through the floor. As I rounded the banister, in a mad dash to save the dueling darlings, or maybe just to see who would survive, I heard the crash of broken glass.
Getting to the bottom of this was going to be no picnic. It was a barrage of “she started it”s and “it wasn’t my fault”s. So I banished them to the outer regions of time-out. The little one, the instigator of all words with tone, snatched a book off the coffee table as she went sulking to jail. It’s her favorite, a book of Psalms for children by Marie-Helen Delval, great stuff for the beginning reader. Usually there are no books in time-out, or anything fun, but this day I let it go.
After both girl folk had paid their debt to society and were let out of perpetual nothingness the little one said, “Wow- I needed that.” With my mouth agape, and an eldest sister eye roll, I questioned the why of that statement. “You know when you just need some quiet, alone, by yourself time with God, and you don’t get it- you can go crazy.”
My people went on their merry way and forgot all about that stray Lego. But as my days wind up and wind down and my looks get smirky and I use words with tone, I must admit her words stick. Without a regular dose of solitude, quiet, alone time with God- I do get crazy.
How about you? What are some ways you can carve out some quiet, alone, time with God for your littlest people?
How about some of that time for yourself?