The new Keurig coffeemaker was sitting in its box on our counter along with cards in pink envelopes, homemade cards and poems, and other items the kids had made.
It was Mother’s Day morning.
Anna, our oldest daughter (11 years of age), went upstairs acting as our waitress to ask mom what she wanted for breakfast. Our menu was small but robust.
After taking her breakfast order Anna came down and “Surprise Mom” went into action.
The plan as I had concocted in my mind was to have the girls run upstairs to mom, tell her the coffeepot wasn’t working (since she is the only one who really uses it) and for her to come down to help. When she entered the kitchen, we would yell, “Happy Mother’s Day” with joy and excitement written all over our faces. She would be so overwhelmed with emotions that she would fall to her knees praising God for such a wonderful family.
Well….that’s not quite the way it happened.
I had one daughter accuse the other of telling mom what we got her, who then started crying and screaming running into our living room. I was telling mom to come down and to “play along” as I was trying to cook breakfast and keep the kids from killing each other. By the time Karen walked into the kitchen, only Nicholas (my oldest son) said, “Happy Mother’s Day,” as I was yelling at our daughters to come into the kitchen.
An absolute disaster. For one moment, just a brief moment, couldn’t we pull it all together? Oh, how I wish.
Moments in time. It’s all we really have when you think about it. Some of our best laid plans never seem to live up to the expectations we put on them. College, jobs, marriage, kids, dreams…Mother’s Day Celebrations.
Moments in Time
Photographer Jeff Hirsch stated, “There are fleeting moments that define our experience in this life. Moments in time that are ephemeral and transient. Moments that touch us for the remainder of our days. Moments that pass before our helpless eyes and escape our grasping desire to possess them.
I stalk these moments with a hungry mind and fix them with my gaze. I lay in wait to catch that singular instance of existence — not before, not after, but just then. I have the power to stop time in its tracks, to seize the frozen moment and hold it fast…”
I love this quote not as a photographer, but as a parent. “I lay in wait to catch that singular instance of existence…I have the power to seize the frozen moment…”
A picture is able to capture a moment in time. I am sure a photographer throws out tons of pictures trying to find the one that truly captures the right moment. I know I do.
The courage for all of us is not what to do with our best moments that we are willing to post to Instagram and Facebook but it’s the not so pretty moments.
The ugly moments.
What do we do with those moments?
I Choose You
As we ended our Mother’s Day after a day filled with many highs and lows, which included a canoe trip on a local pond, we found ourselves in a familiar place…in our girl’s bedroom praying as a family. A thought crossed my mind, as we prayed, “I choose you!”
As much as I hated the debacle of my Mother’s Day plan, everyday our family chooses each other. We choose to work through our pride and selfishness. We choose to work through our conflicts and arguments. We choose to believe the best even when we are at our worst.
As we prayed and confessed our brokenness and love for each other I was thankful that Christ chose us first. (John 15:16). The moments we are given each day is not about getting them right or perfect 100% of the time.
It’s also about giving our moments to The One who is transforming and redeeming us. It’s His grace working in and through us.
Because He chose me…he gives me the grace I need to choose you…and the ability to love you. Imagine the transformation that would happen in our homes if we loved the way of 1 Corinthians 13:4-7
“Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.”