All Together

“Grace, grace, God’s grace…”  Blending a family of five kids can sometimes feel like a train wreck.  Being perfectly honest and just letting what’s in my head fall into the paper today I have to admit that I fall apart over our attempts to bring our family together.  Even as I am sitting here there are things happening that are making my skin crawl, and Satan is just outside the door with a big bucketful of despair waiting for the chance to douse my heart.  A kindergartener throws a temper tantrum.  Elementary schoolers bicker, make messes, and cause more noise that our apartment can contain.  A highschooler stirs up strife.  Kenny and I have to stay up to 1 am in order to have a private conversation and stay in touch.  All the parenting advice in the world, all the self-admonition to be patient, to control my temper, all the structure and family policies- nothing can make me strong enough for this job!  I can’t get myself under control, much less my household- it’s a mess!  “Grace, grace, God’s grace.”  At a moment of blood boiling, will-this-ever-get-better-ness, I suddenly remembered that line.  “Grace, grace, God’s grace, grace that is greater than all my sin.”  Take out sin and plug in “family” or “kid’s foolishness,” or whatever in that moment is stopping me from resting- resting in the finished work of Christ on the cross.  My five year old just fell on the floor in a temper tantrum in the middle of the crowded subway station.  God has a plan to redeem her heart from her sinful nature just like He did mine.  I don’t need to panic.  My six year old just spoke words he never should have heard.  My God is still bigger.  My eight year old has a heart ache because of the unkindness of a sibling he admires, God knows this. He is in control of my baby boy’s life and will work all things into the fabric of Their relationship.  We only have two months before our nine year old leaves us again- it doesn’t make it hurt less, but God is with her.  Our teenager spews forth all the foolishness of youth, but God is big enough to bring him into a relationship with Him, and that alone can make his life what it should be.  I blow it and sin against a kid, or my precious husband, and I don’t have to hide because God has already forgiven me, and His plan to bless my family and grow them into strong, life consuming relationships with Him won’t be thwarted by me.  “Grace, grace, God’s grace. Grace that is greater.”  Greater.  Grace that is great enough.  Great Grace.  That’s our family.

Family Trip to I'Park Mall  Kenny loves malls; can't you tell?

Family Trip to I’Park Mall Kenny loves malls; can’t you tell?

We climb on statues.

We climb on statues.

The optometrist's waiting room.

The optometrist’s waiting room.

Acting out a statue at Seoul Grand Park.

Acting out a statue at Seoul Grand Park.

Bathing Beauties at Seoul Grand Children's Park

Bathing Beauties at Seoul Grand Children’s Park

Daddy daughter dance- where Dad went on to win the hula hoop contest!

Daddy daughter dance- where Dad went on to win the hula hoop contest!

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