Saturday, August 27, 2011

Family Portrait Bloopers

Am I the only mother with a shoebox labeled "Christmas Card Bloopers"? One day I swear I'll make an album of those. They tell more of the story than the staged ones that made it to print and got mailed.

I don't think it's a sick or twisted trait. We all long for truth. That longing in me wants to embrace the twin runny noses on the front porch of our Chicago house the year my toddlers hung on the icicled rail gazing west into the sunset. The truth those bloopers told was how much we all longed to go {back} west to the beaches of 72 and sunny San Diego.

Family portraits present the same dilemma. Do we dare tell the truth? Let alone frame it. We were in Nantucket last week and took the opportunity for a professional photo shoot. Jim took these from the sidelines. The truth is: we love to recycle, keep the beach clean and make music!

Certainly, I'm not the only one who prefers candids. But these are pushing it don't you think? We shall see what Cary Hazlegrove got. And then decide what to submit for the yearbook Senior Picture.

"Walk straight, act right, tell the truth. Psalm 15:1-3

Not so fast," said the king. "How many times have I made you promise under oath to tell me the truth and nothing but the truth?" 2 Chronicles 18:14-16

For God's Word is solid to the core; everything he makes is sound inside and out. He loves it when everything fits, when his world is in plumb-line true. Psalm 33:3-5

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Seeing Potential

Reid came running off the bus as elated as his cheery bus drivers. He was in proud possession of another "Social Superstar award" from school. Waving it with shoulders back and a big wide grin made him seem 3 feet taller than when he'd left that morning. The thrill of victory!

It reminded me of the one he'd brought home last January. It's still on the bulletin board waiting to make the blog. It reads "Hygiene Social Superstar" which was ironic at the time. I imagine it may have been a one-time-only creation from the genius staff at Pioneer Day School.

What lies beneath the surface (but is not lost on me) is the fact that his nose was running heavily that week with a persistent cold. He hates to handle tissues, let alone use them to actually wipe his nose. The fact that they gave him the "hygiene" award that particular week, first made me laugh. Were they being sarcastic?! I could see the disgusting result of 7 hours of drip being wiped on the same shirtsleeve.

But really and truly, they live out the tagline on the Director's auto signature: "Great people are those who can make others feel that they, too, can become great." Mark Twain

To perceive, let alone treat people according to their potential is a mighty thing. They did not emphasize the mess, the inconvenience or the breach in sanitation mores. Instead they rewarded the progress toward mastery in personal hygiene. Maybe it was one swipe of a kleenex? or two squirts of anti-bac soap? I'll never know, but I appreciate it. Their intention heightened Reid's awareness of his own ability. Their belief was in a future eventuality.

It reminds me of how God the Father sees us through the blood of Christ. He doesn't see our sin or messed up lives. All that is cancelled by the cross. He sees us instead through Jesus--white as snow, forgiven, with a destiny as sons and daughters clothed in robes of righteousness, heirs to his inheritance. A mighty thing indeed!

God sacrificed Jesus on the altar of the world to clear that world of sin. Having faith in him sets us in the clear. This is not only clear, but it's now—this is current history! God sets things right. He also makes it possible for us to live in his rightness. Romans 3:25

God's Spirit touches our spirits and confirms who we really are. We know who he is, and we know who we are: Father and children. And we know we are going to get what's coming to us—an unbelievable inheritance! Romans 8:15-17

It's like a filthy set of ill-fitting clothes you've stripped off and put in the fire. Now you're dressed in a new wardrobe. Every item of your new way of life is custom-made by the Creator, with his label on it...From now on everyone is defined by Christ, everyone is included in Christ. Colossians 3:10

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Top 10 Tuesday

Top 10 Favorite Words from Reid's Latest IEP

10. charismatic

9. initiator

8. seizes

7. leading

6. enthusiasm

5. contagious

4. kinesthetic

3. joyful

2. laughing

1. charismatic (yes, it was used twice)

I realize this is taking things out of context, but sitting there sharing a copy of "Present Levels" with Jim, I couldn't help but underline the words that popped out at me. This is our boy!

How wonderful to be around a table of people who notice, appreciate and acknowledge his strengths while they shore up his considerable deficits. Keeping the gifts in sight is what motivates us all, including Reid. As it's been said, we become what we focus on.

I wouldn't have imagined ever saying this but the morning after, I told Jim I wish those meetings were more often. To brainstorm and collaborate with people who care so deeply about Reid's future and work creatively and tirelessly toward common goals, was energizing.

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Philippians 4:7-9

For as he thinks in his heart, so is he. Proverbs 23:7

And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect. Romans 12:1-3