Can we please decide right now to just give each other a break? In the next few weeks as more communities begin to open, we will all need whole new levels of grace and mercy.
Everyone, yes everyone, you meet is coming out of a hard time. Maybe not the worst time of their lives, but still hard. All the rules have changed. Nothing is where we left it. We’re all a little unsure about what is expected of us in public. Let’s all keep that in mind when we see each other, especially if we are meeting someone new.
Eleven years ago, I got an inside look at this. We had just brought our preemie home, and we were barely managing three kids under the age of six. Then I got the call from my kindergartener’s teacher.
“Hey, Denyse, this is Shari from Grace. I just wanted to let you know Ethan just has a cupcake and a banana in his lunchbox.” Somehow, that morning a lunchbox double check didn’t happen.
No kidding, my only coherent thought was that I would have to become a better mom just to make the “incompetent” grade.
But then the teacher did something I’ll always remember. She said, “Don’t worry about it. There was a funeral luncheon at church today. I’ll grab a sandwich for him.” Her reassuring tone of voice and entire light hearted demeanor let me know that she knew we were in a difficult situation. She offered me grace, not just the forgiveness for what I had done, but the assurance that this one slip was not the defining moment of my parenting. She didn’t treat me as someone needing a lesson in organization or parenting, but someone needing help. That afternoon when I picked up my son, she even had some extra sandwiches wrapped and ready to go for the rest of my family. Apparently the grieving family heard about our situation and wanted to extend their support. Can you imagine a family in the middle of loss looking past their own grief to express support to someone else?
All of us have had the pieces of our lives tossed into a sand bucket, shaken up and dumped on the ground. The rules have changed so often and so fast that we all have social vertigo. We are all trying to figure out how to repair the parts of our life that took damage. Some of us have forgotten how to act in public. Most of us have forgotten how to dress in public. And all of us have forgotten how to drive. Let’s write each other a blank check for grace and mercy.
Oh, and If you think you’ve forgotten how to dress, or just want to pickup a new style, let me know. In my downtime, I’ve turned my passion for fashion into a certification.
Remember, love God, serve others and take care of yourself.