Around the tree, around the tree, that is how we make a 3: Happy Birthday, Ben

2 Kids, 3 Days, 2000 Years would be an apt subtitle for this post…

Sweet Caroline (pause here to sing if needed) was born on the 14th. But not to be overshadowed is our oldest, Ben. He turns 3 today. Watching him grow and learn over the last few years has been such a gift, pure grace, in fact.

I’ve also seen him sin. Nice transition, right?

Ben is a wonderfully sensitive, thoughtful, expressive little guy who can brighten the dullest and most monotonous moments. But he also shoves his sister (Nora Jane) to the ground with hand to face and then lies about it. He has slapped mom and kicked dad.

Upon being told No at Target, he proceeded to throw himself onto the pavement in the parking lot and then run around said parking lot while Lindsey was trying to regain control without dropping sis in the process.

After watching Shark Tank for a season now, I’m considering a pitch. Imagine the scene described, but just as you’re about to drop your other child, you hit a button and the hellion running around drops to the ground (gently, of course). How’d that happen? You used the Tantrum Tranquilizer–the remote controlled child tranquilizer that is easily hidden inside any and all of your children’s clothing. I’m thinking Mr. Wonderful is my guy…

Seriously though, having two kids now with birthdays around Passion week serves as an unavoidable reminder of two things:

1.  Everyone is a sinner in need of a Savior. That cute kid-the one who is like your heart walking outside of your body-is as much a sinner as the crotchety old guy you go to church with [that’s the worst person I could think of]. Both put nails in the hands and feet of Jesus. And both need the forgiveness of Jesus.

2. Jesus meets us where we are. He spoke to Mary by name. He entered through locked doors to meet the disciples. He invited Thomas to touch his wounds if that would help him believe. Jesus makes it a habit to show up in the heights of joy as well as the depths of sorrow.

When I see Ben do something stupid and sinful, I’m reminded of how God looks upon me in similar moments and loves me no less. To imagine that His love for us is infinitely more complete than my love for Ben is just hard to swallow.

Enjoy this little timeline of B’s life.


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