Deer season opens in just a month. I can tell because two of my boys are out every afternoon practicing with the bow, working on deer stands, and/or scouting for deer. More and more, regardless of where conversations begin, they end up on the topic of deer hunting. The hunting bug will be at fever pitch by mid-September, and the fever won't begin to subside until the first deer is brought home for processing.
Psalm 127 refers to children as a heritage, a reward, and a blessing. This is no abstract "philosophy of childhood." No, in my experience, it is practical, concrete reality. With deer hunting on my mind, I got to thinking of the many ways my kids bless me. (Deer hunting, it seems, is related to everything else in life!) Besides the fact that they are mine, and the fact that they are some of the most awesome people I know, my kids....
...fill the deep-freeze with meat every year. They also help plant, maintain, and harvest the garden, and then work with me to can and freeze the produce. One son supplies the family with eggs; another son shares fresh honey. What a blessing!
Piano, penny whistle, banjo, guitar...my kids fill the house with music. A couple of my boys are teaching me to appreciate country music. It's not unusual for someone to share aloud an interesting or amusing exerpt from whatever book they are currently reading. One is about to melt my brain with his development of a philosophy of science. Their discussions over schoolwork keep my brain from atrophying. Dinnertime conversations are amusing, sometimes positively ridiculous. What a blessing!
A call or a letter from my daughter in Iowa brightens my day like no amount of sunshine can. So does checking in on Facebook and getting to "chat" with my son-in-law. The notes of encouragement tucked under my pillow, discovered at the end of a long day; the bouquet of flowers gathered from the hay field; a bowl of fresh, warm blackberries, picked "just for Mom"; a blazing fire kindled on a cold winter morning....I should pause more often to consider all the many ways my children bless me each day.
My kids challenge me to think, to give, to laugh, and to live. They make this journey an adventure. Yes, children really are a blessing. I'm so grateful for my "full quiver"!
1 month ago