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from the archives – the parable of the silky

December 24, 2007 Leave a comment

From last Christmas. Beautiful stuff.

Once there was a boy. Since the day he was born he had treasured a 1 x 1 square of blue silk cloth he called his silky. He loved his silky. It traveled with him everywhere he went. There was no sleeping without it. It had been torn and repaired. It was stained from years of meals and playing and who knows what else. It was truly a beautiful, cherished part of the boy’s life.
Then one day when the boy was five years old the unthinkable happened. Silky disappeared. It had happened before. Silky would hide somewhere for most of a day or a night. It would spend the night at a grandparent’s house. Once it had stayed gone for 48 hours and had been replaced in a fit of parental desperation by a far inferior substitute. Initially, the boy and his parents were sure this was just another of those random disappearances. Then silky stayed gone. Pockets were searched, nothing. The house was turned upside down, nothing. It was cleaned and searched from top to bottom, nothing. Cars were scoured, nothing. Tears were beginning to fall (not only by the boy). In desperation, parking lots where the family had traveled on the day of the disappearance were searched. Phone calls were made to stores hoping for a miraculous discovery in the lost and found – nothing.
Hours turned into days became weeks. The boy bravely turned to the substitute silky and managed to convince himself it was the real thing. Parents couldn’t do it. Prayers were prayed. Surely God cared enough about the boy and his silky to reunite them. But nothing happened. Silky stayed gone. Sure that it had been lost in a parking lot, the parents began to resolve themselves to a world without the treasured friend.
But. . .
Christmas morning (of course it was Christmas morning), the boy wanted to run outside with his dad and brother to check out a new toy. A fuzzy pullover was grabbed out of the closet to cover some of his pjs against the north wind, but he couldn’t get it on. Taking it to his dad to get help, he poked his hand into an arm hole. As he pushed through, something was in the way. Pushing harder, a piece of blue silk emerged from the arm hole. No, THE piece of blue silk emerged from the arm hole. In a mad rush to take off the fuzzy 3 weeks earlier, silky had been caught in the sleeve. Now it was home.
The family was called together to rejoice. More tears, these of joy, were shed. Other family members were called to celebrate. That which was lost had been found. The words “Christmas miracle” were heard spoken more than once. A thankful dad whispered a quiet “Thank you” to the God who does care about five-year old boys and their precious things.

From the archives – the snake story 11/12/2003

October 26, 2007 Leave a comment

In honor of Nathan’s birthday – I give you quite possibly the most ridiculous 20 minutes in the history of our family.
Enjoy.

“j, there’s a snake in nathan’s room!” now i don’t know what passes for normal, first-thing-in-the-morning conversation at your house, but around here, that’s not it. it is impossible, short of going to the videotape (of which, thank God, there is none) to describe the comedy of errors that ensued. i don’t know if it is because neither one of us has slept much the last two nights (nathan is sick) or that i just haven’t watched the croc hunter in a while, but clearly this morning i did not have my snake catching groove on. on another day, i would have picked the thing up and carried it outside and been done with it. not today. this five inch snake shut down our house for a solid half hour while kenda and i debated our strategy for bringing it down and then executed our brilliant plan. now i have to say, in our defense, we really didn’t want to kill it. after all, we were the ones that made it homeless by digging up all of the bushes in front of our house. so in a way we felt responsible for the thing. it is impossible to relay the entirety of this epic struggle between man and beast, but here are a few highlights.

equipment used in the capture

a pencil (kenda was really obsessed with “poking” the snake – i don’t get it)
a towel (to keep it from escaping into nathan’s closet – it could grow to 15 feet in there and we still probably wouldn’t find it)
a coat hanger (see best lines below)
a 32 ounce cup (shrug)
2 different tupperware ™ containers (now that’s something they don’t show you at the parties)
a copy of A Chance to Die by elizabeth elliot (i still have no idea what kenda wanted this for – maybe it was prophetic? maybe she wanted to read something to the snake before she executed her plan – see below)
a piece of red posterboard
starting to get a picture of the brilliance?

best lines from the battle

kenda — “how ’bout if i hold it down with the hanger and you chop it in half” — all i could think of after this was clark w. griswold in christmas vacation chasing the squirrel and saying “i’m going to throw the coat on it and whack it with a hammer”
j — “the neighbors paid too much money for their homes to have to see me like this first thing in the morning” (said on going to put a shirt on after the capture, before going outside for the release)
caleb — “cool, can we keep it for a pet?”

best onlooker

this is a tossup between
nathan laying in his bed half awake sick as a dog wondering what in the heck we are looking at
and
the school bus full of kids that drove by as we were walking out the front door, both of us holding our elaborate capturing mechanism that consisted of the larger of the tupperware containers with the bright red posterboard underneath. (i hope snakes are colorblind, if not that poor little guy is blinded)

the end

i know you are all holding your breath. we managed to get our new little friend out the front door and into the yard. i think kenda wanted to take him down the street a mile or two just to make sure he wouldn’t find his way back to nathan’s room, but that seemed like overkill. as he slipped into the grass and out of our lives, i found myself wondering what kind of story he would tell about the first thing that happened to him this morning.

embarrassed but victorious
j

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