Monday, September 13, 2010

Knowing how to party

Some opinions are fashionable to have. Often they are about parenting, and they usually involve judging how other people manage it.

In the past few years, I've had a variety of conversations about kids birthday parties. Some have involved tongue-clicking at the amount of money so-and-so spent on a jumping castle or a fairy or a clown or a cake. I've prided myself on my children knowing they are loved by my every-day actions rather than their birthday party or present budget.

This week we went to a birthday party at a fun park. I know my friend spent lots of money on it. I also know that this was the most powerful way, my friend knows, to tell her son, and her friends and family, that she loves them.

I might not think that her party was a wise use of money, and I might even have ethically sound, biblically literate reasons for doing parties differently to her.

But I better be careful about how I treat her love-gift to me and my family. Because how I respond to her generosity and her desire to celebrate (both biblically mandated ideas) needs to be with love and grace.

I better ask myself whether my high ideals and small-l liberal opinions on child-rearing are a key component of want I want to show her about faith in God. Or do I want to celebrate with her in the way she has graciously asked me to join her.

I am challenged to make sure I'm living Christ-like principles, rather than middle-class principles.

I thank God for my dear friend, who loves to be generous. I thank God for her delight in seeing kids having fun, and her delight in giving. May he help me to show his love wisely and graciously.
I thank God for a trip on the Ferris wheel, unanimously voted the best thing we did all day.

No comments: