Thursday, January 23, 2014

And Each is Different - Wildly Beautiful Creations

Make a joyful noise to the LORD, all the earth! Serve the LORD with gladness! Come into his presence with singing! Know that the LORD, he is God! It is he who made us and we are his; we are his people and the sheep of his pasture. Psalm 100:1-3 ESV

We're cutting paper snowflakes. They'll be lovely in the windows. You'd think we'd be winter-tired. And we are. But creativity draws us. So we gather around the table with a stack of white paper, scissors, and sweet time. It's the perfect winter day thing.

I watch my three youngest sons as they craft their snowflakes. One makes the folds carefully. Matching corner to corner. Pressing the crease gently. Another isn't so careful. The corners barely match. But that's okay.

"It's going to be beautiful," Zay says.

 I don't doubt.

 I take a piece of paper from the stack and begin to make my own. But I let it rest on the table in front of me. There's too much going on.

Samuel is cutting pieces from his folded paper. He's careful. Slow. Tiny snips here and there. He appears to have a plan. He turns his folded square and takes a few more snips from another side. He knows where the edges are. They're different from the sides that hold the center.

Gabriel is even more careful than Sam. He pauses before he cuts. He thinks. His head tilts to the side. He turns the square over and back. He squints. Presses his lips together. Gabe has Lonny's engineer brain. Every cut is calculated. The scissors move with precision.

Then there's Zay. So far, he's more like me. Not as careful. But creative. His folds are faster. His scissors carve loops and curves from the paper. Sometimes when he unfolds, the treasure is in
two pieces or more. No worries. He tries again. His tongue presses to the corners of his mouth as he works.  His blond bangs fall forward. Small fingers turn his folded square. His scissors scroll the edges.

It's amazing to me. The differences in my boys. Some of it may reflect their staggered ages. But mostly, I think, it's that God made them to be different. Boys are handcrafted, too. There are similar things, brother bonds, things that stitch them similar as boys born and raised in the same brood. But it's easy to see they have varied bents. Different talents. Different gifts. There are the more challenging qualities, too. The things in about their temperaments that can drive me half wild. Some are more strong willed. Some are more stubborn. I'm fully convinced that, in the Lord's hands, these will be Kingdom strengths. But all in all, rolled together, hammered out, these differences are beautiful.

And they move me to the soul.

"What do you think, Mom?" Gabe asks. He's holding a paper snowflake with pincher fingers.

"Lovely. I'm in awe," I say.

I'm admiring the snowflakes.

And I'm admiring them.

Thank you, God, for crafting my boys differently. I praise you for these wildly beautiful creations. Amen.

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