They colored their ornaments while we talked about how scary it must have been for Mary to hear she was going to be a mom at such a young age. Her response, however, showed only obedience to God.The ebook suggested that the kids act out Luke 1:26-38 with their Gabriel and Mary ornaments, so that's exactly what we did! I was not disappointed! Here are 4 different takes of our video.
I love the natural creativity of kids! I love that Luke would make the "Ahhhhh" angel sound when he was coming down as the angel Gabriel. I love that Kade screamed and jumped back in fear. On one of the videos, it's hard to tell, but Kade had Mary doing some laundry when Gabriel appeared to her. I even loved the video where Luke, as the angel, told Mary that she was going to have a baby and call him Jesus and Kade simply said, "Ok." We laughed when he said it, but I thought, well, that's basically what Mary did. She didn't argue with the angel or refuse his message. I also loved the realness of Grace, who couldn't stand not to be part of our Christmas play, and kept sitting on Luke's lap. I hope these videos remind me, in 10 years or so, that I took the time not only to teach my children, but to have some fun and relax a little.
That's something we mamas (and daddies) need to try to do more often. Be present. Take time to giggle. Really breathe in your kiddos. I know it's kind of a sidenote to the Advent study, but it's also really related. Don't just read them a lesson or a passage of scripture and leave it at that. Make it personal. Tell them what it means to you. Ask them how they would feel in a situation. Tell them how you think you would feel. The only way they'll see faith as something special, intimate, and personal is if you show them how personal it is to you.
Yesterday, I forced my brain to stop moving ahead at ten thousand miles an hour and to stay right where I was. Grace was playing a game with me while I was making my bed and she kept running down the hallway towards me, grinning, and then, when I held out my arms, she backed away, grinning and laughing. I just stopped and watched her, trying to capture the image of her almost 2 year old grin in my mind to keep forever. The boys and I played a game of Life and several times, I just sat in silence, soaking in all of their silliness and laughter. One day, they won't be here all the time and I hope that if I take the time to just be and to mentally capture all of their wisdom and love and laughter, even when our home is emptier and quieter, all of the memories we've made will fill our house with light and joy.
Try to slow down during this joyful and often busy season. Make room for Jesus and make room for memories. Don't go, go, go until suddenly, the season is over and all you've done is run here and there and stressed. It doesn't take much to make moments that will last forever. Only time.