Sunday, November 16, 2008

Sunday Reflections

I'm reflecting today on the awesomeness of being 11 and 0. After cheering on and supporting my team through many seasons of mediocrity, coaching struggles, and all sorts of ups-and-downs, I really can't begin to explain the joy that I am having with the success of my beloved Crimson Tide this year. It's really a dream season. So unexpected and, as a result, so very sweet. We have one more game to complete a perfect season. Then we'll be in the SEC championship game.

After we got to eight wins (which I sorta figured would be our total for the entire year), it's all just been like icing on the cake. Very, very good icing.

McKenna and I had a blast last night at the game. We bundled up (it was extremely chilly, so we both wore layers upon layers of clothes), stood up most of the game, jumped up and down a lot, and cheered our hearts out. We also got to spend several hours at my Mom and Dad's house, which always translates into a wonderful time. It was a most excellent way to spend an afternoon and an evening!

Today I am also reflecting on the humor and wisdom of children.

I am the children's church leader during November and it is always both a joy and a challenge. A joy because I'm honored to be able to make any sort of positive impact on kids. A challenge because you wonder how much of an impact you're having when you have to tell them--repeatedly--to get their bottoms back in the pews and remind them that God really doesn't want them calling their brother or sister "stupid."

This morning, though, it was their humor that really got to me.

When I asked them what story we had learned about last week in children's church, they looked at me with dumbfounded looks on their faces (the majority of them, apparently, don't have great information retention abilities) and I had to encourage them with reminders of the story. I told them it had to do with two guys trying to find the land that God wanted them to have, and then one of the guys letting the younger guy have the best land they found. Again, they looked at me with no memory at all of the lesson last week. And then one little girl said, "Lewis and Clark?"

I had to tell her that, no, Lewis and Clark were a little bit past Old Testament times and that the answer was Abraham and Lot.

Later on, I asked them what different things they knew about Abraham. A different little girl said this time, "He was a president?" I told her that Abraham Lincoln was a president, but that wasn't quite the Abraham I was thinking of.

Once I had determined that the kids were pretty much there solely for humor, I got several amazing comments from this little boy who is beyond smart and insightful. I think he's a few steps closer to God than most adults are and he is always throwing me for a loop with his spiritual maturity.

Today I was trying to teach about how God always knows His plans for us. We may not quite get it, but God always knows what He's doing. Nicholas just nodded at me and said, "I think sometimes God gives us things that are hard because He wants us closer to Him."

This kid is nine.

And then, when I was using modeling clay to teach how God is the potter and we are the clay, I asked for insights on that. While most of the kids were intent on creating snakes and footballs out of the clay, Nicholas said that, "Clay can't mold itself. It has to have someone mold it. And we're the same way."

I just nodded my head back at him and said, "Kids, that's it. That's the lesson for today. Nicholas said it better than I ever could. We can't mold ourselves into the person God wants us to be. We have to trust His plans and then let Him take over."

Pretty amazing, don't you think?

Okay...that post just went from Alabama football to some pretty cool life lessons. Just rambling, I guess.

While we're on spiritual topics, though, let me share one last thing that I'd meant to post Friday and never did.

On Friday night, we actually sat down and ate dinner together at the table. (Something that doesn't happen as much as I'd like it to, by the way.) Sydney always wants to say the prayer when we eat together, so we let her again.

This was how her prayer went. Every time she prays, I just ooh and aah over what she has to say. This time was no different.

"Dear God.
Thank you for loving us.
Thank you for making us.
Thank you for giving us three pretty kitty cats.
And thank you for loving my sisters.

The loving my sisters part really got me.


Travis Erwin said...

Roll Tide Roll. And hey, even my Huskers are on a roll.

Sher's Creative Expressions said...

That 9 year old boy in your children's church is pretty amazing. . . and so it your daughter!!



Adrienne said...

I told you ONLY For you will I say ROLL TIDE! LOL

Cheryl Wray said...

Travis--Thanks for the Roll Tide!!! I've been wishing your Huskers well all season!

Sher--It's crazy what kids can teach me!

Adrienne--LOL (thanks!)

Phats said...

ROLL TIDE!!! beat the crap out of Auburn!! I have never liked them even before I met you haha :)

OK I don't wanna hear it was chilly, it's going to be a high of 38 saturday with ACCUMULATING SNOW! ha Should be a fun bucket game

Kelly said...

My 4 yo says "thank you for the food, the wine, the dogs."

Lynilu said...

I love that children see/understand what we adults often overlook. Anyone talking to a child should listen. We tend to think they don't know much when the truth is, they know more than we do simply because they don't fight it, trying to put it into preconceived niches.

I love being at my daughter's house where they take turns saying the blessing at dinnertime. There is one that I'll have to get the words and send to you. The kids go to a parochial school, and they learned the "Superman prayer" there. It is very cute!

Cheryl Wray said...

Phats--No, I'm SERIOUS!! It was ACTUALLY chilly!! Like 40 degrees. And wind chill at like 30. And rainy. Yuck!! (But no snow! You've got us beat there!! lol)

Kelly--Cute! Those are some great things tobe thankful for. :-)

Lynilu--Our youth does the "Superman" prayer at church too. Too fun!

Gretchen said...

Well, I'll have to live vicariously through the Tide because my Huskies are 0-10. Sigh.
Very cool story re: the 9 year old boy. Bless you for working as the children's ministry leader. Such a huge, important task.

Loved Sydney's prayer. What a dolly.

have a great week, friend!

hippo chick said...

Aren't kids just amazing? Love that little guy in Children's church. And then there's Sydney. How precious.

And once again, Roll Tide!!!!
You have got me hooked and now I'll be watching and cheering until the end.

~hippo hugs~

Laura said...

Cheryl - I was in the Galleria this weekend and heard that the Disney store would be opening at Midnight on the Friday after Thanksgiving! Can you believe that? Anyway, they had the vanity set when I was there. Just an FYI. Have a great week!

Linda said...

so I really really love the pics at the pagent below. I'm still tickled at Sydney's sweet prayer, and the nine year old kid... WOW. That is just too awesome. I love it...oh and ROLLLLLLLLLLLLL TIDDDDDE!

Cheryl Wray said...

Gretchen--0 and 10. I feel your pain sweetie! (Believe me, I love sports too much to not be sympathetic. lol)

Pam--I think it is SO GREAT that you are cheering on Bama now. Keep it going--the hardest is coming up!

Laura--I don't think I have the fortitude to survive the Galleria on that Friday. LOL Thank goodness I already found the vanity. :-)

Linda--Yeah, he blew me away. The things kids can come up with, huh? And THANKS for the Roll Tide. You guys are awesome cheerleaders!! :-)

Edleen said...

kids are truly Amazing! Thanks for sharing the story Cheryl :)

have a lovely week!

Monogram Queen said...

I am afraid I would embarass mself and bust out laughing at those kids.
Seriously though some kids just take your breath away with the things they just somehow "get"!

I know you are a big blessing in those children's lives Cheryl!