Christopher has penmanship like his father's: A cross between a serial killer's and a neurosurgeon's. With a burst of newfound literacy, his words run together without capitals, spaces, uppers and lowers jumbed together. It has a profoundly confusing affect. We offered him a dollar for each exercise page, a knock-off of a typing exercise from decades past: "The quick brown fox jumps. The lazy dog sleeps." To no avail.
So you can imagine my mixed feelings this morning, coming out to find the following sign posted on his bathroom door: "Sarah is not a lod in this bathroom!" It was his first independent expression ... a cry for privacy. I took it down and put it in the pile of papers to be saved. The sentiment was not exactly condusive to peace and tranquility (if Sarah were old enough to read, I imagine she would camp out in the bathroom just to get her brother's goat). But to me it was a sign that my little boy is growing up.
Christopher's handmade sign has implications for each of us. As we contemplate our Lenten offerings ... no candy, no alcohol, no (gasp) T.V. ... most of us have some area that would be especially difficult to offer back to God. For me, it would be either Diet Coke or lunchtime "Judging Amy" reruns. When I was in the full-time working world, I gave up Diet Coke -- it turned out to be more a sacrifice for my secretary, who treatened to quit if I ever pulled a caffeine deprivation stunt like that again.
As we enter the Lenten season, let's take a moment to consider not only what we will offer God out of a desire to grow in perfect love for Him. Candy ... and compassion. Alcohol ... and adoration. Diet Coke ... and the desire to keep it a secret from the world around me, making my little sacrifice a true labor of love.