Last night we skipped my kids’ carnival. It might not sound like a big deal, but for a while it was for me. Dozens of friends were there with jumpy houses galore and game stations. And with a BBQ, dinner would be taken care of. When I dropped James off at pre-school, I heard, “What station are you manning?” and had to say, “none”. I heard, “What are you bringing?” and had to say, “I’m dropping off a pre-packaged veggie tray.” We’ve gone the last two years and our kids have had a blast, and whatever it costs has already been covered by our pre-school tuition. It felt like an unnatural time to leave town.
Meanwhile, later today, some dear friends are throwing a wedding reception in Carmel. “Why don’t you just go overnight?” my in-laws asked. “Sure!” Jason jumped at the opportunity. I thought of all the logistics.
The turning point for me came on the beautiful drive down in my father-in-law’s green Audi TT. Jason looked at me and said, “If we had passed up this opportunity, there is no way we could say we have a marriage-centered family.” I was good to go.
Long before we had children, we had explored the idea of a kid-centered family versus a marriage-centered family. We noticed the volume and detail the Bible instructs about marriage versus the raising of children. We’ve watched how some awesome families around us have parents who get away and stay in love. And how families that require the kids to provide the joy and center of activity also have kids who bear the brunt of stress and emotional responsibility.
And so the logistics flew out of the convertible. My kids don’t know the good time they missed for two hours last night, but Lord willing they will have parents who have laid down the foundation for their family.