rick & 1j13
Tuesday, April 15, 2003
Yesterday was a weird day. Or at least the evening fellt all out of kilter. I left work to pick up the kids from my wife - she has a 6pm class at our church's bible college, and I've got an 8pm class, so I planned on taking them to Barnes & Noble, let them pick out a book, get me and the missus a latte to take back when we swapped again before my class.

Anyway, we had a good time, and they were very well-behaved, except for too minimally disastrous points. First, at about 7:25pm, I told them it's time to stop playing with the Thomas railroad, get our books and head for the checkout. One of my pet peeves is being ignored b my kids - and Trace didn't skip a beat in the song he was singing/humming under his breath. "Trace, did you hear?" - hum, dooby-doo - "Trace?" - hum, la dee da... You get the picture. So as I got closer, and he still didn't acknowledge just that he'd heard the comment "we've got to go" - I took him by the hand and pulled him away from the train and towards me. At the same time, his index finger on his left hand got jammed in the train carousel - smooshed it pretty bad, tore the skin a little. He didn't scream and holler - but it hurt. I felt bad, because it was a if-you'd-been-listening-this-wouldn't-happen moment, but I felt like dirt for *causing* this injury.

"Trace, why didn't you answer me, bubba? I called you like six times, and you never stopped humming."

"I had to finish my song."

He apologized, and I still felt like scum - but hoped that he might remember the finger even if he didn't remember not listening.

Same thing with Cammi on our way out. I had a tray of coffee and a bag with her book inside, and I'd asked Trace to close his book while we walked to the car and to hold his sister's hand. He keeps on walking, she keeps on skipping, and WHAM, trips on the doorjamb heading out of the store, scrapes her knee and three spots on her shin.

I felt like dirt as I turned slowly (had to protect the coffee, right?) and inspected the damage. Where Tracer hadn't yelled before, she made up for it now. I felt so bad - I was *right* and should've been *obeyed*, but that didn't help her right now. I didn't scold her right then either. We talked about it on the way back to church, and we bandaged her leg pretty good. Tracer's finger was fine, and we waited for class to be over.

Do I do that to God? Do I pretend to listen, but then do my own thing as it suits me? I find myself wanting to finish my own song, my own game, my own ministry, and I wonder how many times I'm crushed my finger in something because I wasn't listening... or how many scraped knees I've had spiritually because I was skipping merrily along without listening to God as He told us to be careful, to hold hands, to take care of the coffee.

Thinking out loud - what happened after class was nuttier... but I've got to get back to work right now. Ciao.
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