"FOR WE ARE HIS WORKMANSHIP, CREATED IN CHRIST JESUS FOR GOOD WORKS, WHICH GOD PREPARED BEFOREHAND, THAT WE SHOULD WALK IN THEM."
I stand in the kitchen cutting the first of six watermelons. My sister is to my right, wielding knife and trying to slice...the silence? The one next to her, a new acquaintance, asks what we do for a living. I say nothing. Determined to remain quiet. Let my sister reply that she is an engineer, working in mine reclamation, having just taken a new job. Knife cuts down. Deep. Rind cracks. Red flesh leaves it's blood stain on the counter.
I hear that old refrain..."I have to work." "I work for a living." "You're so lucky that you don't have to work." I used to explain and defend, but now, I just cut the watermelon and keep my mouth shut. Determined not to cast my pearls away this time. Keep them hidden right there under my shirt. Tucked near my heart. Close to me.
I home school.
We begin another year on Monday, and I know what that means. It means that the two children remaining will get an education in music, math, logic, Latin, literature, grammar, writing, history, geography and science. And I will be schooled in patience, controlling my tongue and my temper, staying faithful to God, to my husband, to the household, and to the schedule. To say nothing of developing a real knack for apologizing, repenting, restoring relationship, and living my life of struggles out loud in front of my kids. Oh, yes, all while knowing I am not enough of anything good to accomplish the job well.
But this is where we meet Jesus. This is where He becomes real to us. This is where, as we sit cuddled on the couch reading together, His sweetness touches our hearts and changes us. Forever. This is where, through tears and fights and frustrations, He teaches us to be more like Him. Full of amazing grace. Full of mercy. Full of forgiveness and love. This is where we surrender to His work.
In all its messiness and fallen down broken days. In all its glorious days of victory. This is the tool. Home school. That the Lord uses to whittle His image right into us. He is the knife that cuts the rind of pride and selfishness and sin...to reveal a softness and even a juiciness in our souls that can only be found by surrendering to that blade. I can't help but cringe just a little...I know it's coming! But...It is by HIS blood, and yes, that blade, that we can be made new. He slices through all that rind to make piles of juicy fruit...that draw a happy crowd. Who doesn't want some of that sweetness?
Can I encourage you to surrender to His blade? Allow Him to cut you away? So you can bear much fruit?
Watermelon juice runs down the Kitten's chin, and I smile. Ready for the new year.
Ready to go back to work,