Today was Report Card Day in the Duffer Household.
And it was not a good outcome.
My crew is not off to a great start for this school year. And I have to admit, I’m really kind of surprised. I wasn’t expecting this today. Even my straight A student’s grades were less than stellar.
So all is not fun and games in the Duffer household tonight. A lot of times it is all fun and games, but tonight, not so much.
I have to take some of the blame. Work stress for the past 3 months has been tremendous; enough so that I’ve barely kept my own head above water in the daily tasks of running a household, let alone keeping up with grades like I should have.
Even so, I found myself quite disappointed. And even angry.
“What in the world? A “D” in English from my youngest boy? Flunking 3 classes from my senior son who needs to graduate? A “B” in English from my youngest straight “A” girl who wants to be an author and an English teacher??”
I had to spend some time chauffeuring children back and forth to activities after school and this evening. And the time I’ve spent in the car has afforded me time to think.
Yes, there is a place for correct anger and disappointment. There is definitely a place for consequences for bad grades.
But there is also room for thanksgiving. In fact, it’s amazing how thanksgiving tempers anger. While I say there is “room” for thanksgiving, really what I mean is that anger that gives way to thanksgiving helps to put things into perspective.
I expect a lot out of my crew. I’m sure that you expect a lot out of your crew as well. I expect a lot out of myself. But sometimes I forget to stop and look at the little victories we have experienced and give thanks to God for them.
Even small things are an evidence of God’s provision and protection; of his grace and his mercy in our lives. And so I started listing all the things I am grateful for where my crew is concerned.
- They truly respect me.
- They are very healthy physically
- To say that each one of them is unique, would be an understatement
- At this point, I do not have to worry about alcohol or drugs where they are concerned. I pray that I never will.
- They love each other.
- They get along with each other (for the most part) 🙂
- Though they have had to grow up quickly, it has not made them jaded or bitter. At all.
- They each have experienced some pretty neat successes this semester: Beth and Tim are both in All-District Choir, Beth and Tim both have fairly large parts in their school plays, Mark has taken up football and will be playing rec basketball this fall. Keli has been promoted to full-time at Men’s Wearhouse and is 90% self-sufficient. And still very much in love. 🙂
- They each know God. They know that it is by God’s grace we not only are surviving but we are continuing to push forward. They know that God has a plan for their lives.
- They talk openly to me, often about God.
- They are each independent in a very healthy way–resourceful and productive, yet dependent upon God.
- We enjoy each other.
- My heart is full of love for each of them….a love that God miraculously created in me.
And so. Yes, there is sadness and no fun consequences in our house tonight. But you know what? They accepted those consequences with sincere apologies and an earnest realization that they each let the ball drop. Even as I write this, the three that are in school are scurrying away at their homework–something I’ve not seen in awhile. It’s kind of funny. “Mom, do you think this sounds right? Mom, would you take a look at this worksheet?” Hmmm…….it’s kind of hard not to laugh, they are trying “too” hard. 🙂
And I know I dropped the ball this quarter as well. But you know what? My God is a God of second chances. We see Biblical proof of that over and over again in scripture: Joseph’s brothers, David, Peter. I could go on. But for now I will close this, examine everyone’s homework, reiterate the consequences, and then we will all have a bowl of ice cream together before we go to bed.
I have much to be thankful for. So much.