On this VERY cold West Central Florida Sunday morning (39 degrees), THIS family struggled to get to worship.
All of us had our own issues.
A couple of us didn't/don't feel well.
One of us wore gloves through the entire worship service so she (me) wouldn't get any 'more' germs.
One of us, who already has two bad knees, somehow blew out her right knee (nope, have no idea how this happened) and went to church with an ace bandage wrapped around an ice pack on her knee, underneath leggings and a long skirt, and I don't think anyone noticed, so, 'whew'.
One of us threw a fit over having to wear a long sleeved 'boring' shirt.
One of us wasn't dressed up enough to be singing with the Praise Band for the first time.
Before we left the house, there were tears.
And a spanking.
The ride to church was UBER-quiet.
We arrive at church.
SOMEONE is in OUR parking space.
Two Swords thinks we 'own' it. Like 'our' pew.
We've only been parking there for eleven years.
And we were thirty minutes early.
But another 'omen', of, Good Lord, can this day GET any worse?
Of course it can!
Two Swords and Reilly the Red exit the car promptly, as Reilly the Red had an important role in the service today. She sang with her usual group, "The Graceland Singers" (yeah, they'll be cuttin' a record someday, don't worry, you'll be hearing from them, I guar-an-tee it). She also had the priviledge of singing with the adult Praise Band for the very first time. AND, was HONORABLY asked to assist with an infant's BAPTISM today! So proud of our little girl today! Lots of tears and goosebumps with our little miracle baby girl today!
The kid who got spanked over a clothing issue refuses to exit the vehicle.
His name would be....Jake.
He has cried silently all the way to church.
He hates his shirt.
It's a rugby shirt.
It makes him look taller.
It makes him look older.
It's a really cool shirt, really, and it looked good on him.
But nope, he hated it, didn't want to wear it, and threw a wild fit when he was forced to, because it was super cold outside, and then felt the wrath (literally) for his obstinate and foolish disobedience.
Hasn't even unbuckled himself.
Has no interest in entering church, whatsoever.
So I get in the backseat and try to 'reason' with him.
"WHAT?" (Folded arms, huff and puff)
"I want to tell you about that shirt you're wearing."
"IT'S BORING AND I HATE IT."
"Jake, I'm going to tell you something. That shirt you are wearing was given to you by your friend Hunter, and Christian wears them and Josh wears them and Wyatt wears them and Uncle Lou wears them and Uncle Chris wears them and they are super cool."
"THEY ARE BORING AND STUPID AND I HATE IT."
"Jake, do you know what that shirt is called?"
"No, Jake, it's called a RUGBY Shirt. Do you know what RUGBY is?"
"No, Jake, Rugby is a sport. And it 's a BADASS sport, and it's so BADASS that you could even DIE while playing it, so no, it is not boring, and it is not stupid, and no one will think that it is."
"EVERYONE WILL MAKE FUN OF ME."
"Jake. I will make you a deal. Are you interested in making you a deal?"
"What's the deal? HMPHHHH." (Arms folded even tighter, lips pursed together.)
"Jake. I will give you ONE DOLLAR for every single person who says your shirt looks boring OR stupid."
He unbuckles his seat.
We get out of the car.
I'M THE SMARTEST MOTHER IN THE WORLD!
We start walking towards the sanctuary.
He says, "What happens if FOUR HUNDRED people say that they don't like my shirt?"
(Friends, our church has approx. 200 members, so, yeah, I was safe.)
"Well then Jake, I guess I will be giving you four hundred dollars then."
"Where the heck ya gonna get that kinda money, Mom?"
"You just let ME worry about the money, and YOU count how many people tell you your shirt is stupid and boring. Deal?"
Of course, no one told him his shirt was stupid or boring.
After worship was over, and Jake was in Sunday school, I ran into a fellow congregant, Miss Joan, and she was raving about my *awesome* kids, and I said, "funny story, Miss Joan...." and I told her about the story of the shirt.
She chuckled, and she said, "Where is he?"
I said he was in Sunday school.
Miss Joan tracked him down.
She told him she loved his shirt.
An hour later, when we were done with church for the day, and Jake exits Sunday school, I say, "Hey buddy! So, um, how much do I owe you?"
"WHAT? NOBODY said your shirt was stupid and boring?"
"Not ONE person said ANYTHING about your shirt?"
"Well, one person did."
"They did? Who did? What did they say?"
"Some nice lady, I can't remember her name, but Reilly knows it, but she told me she liked my shirt, so you owe me a dollar."
"No, I don't owe you a dollar. She LIKED your shirt. That wasn't the deal."
"Yeah, I guess you're right."