Well, there’s only one day separating summer vacation from back to school. Oh, how the time flew. Our first two months were consumed by softball and baseball tournaments. However, the last month of summer found us on the couch and by the pool. We often ate breakfast for lunch and popcorn for dinner. And in case you’re wondering, my feet never touched the sand. Apparently, we’re not a big beach family. And that’s OK by me.
My kids are actually ready to return to school. And to my surprise, I’m not ready. Again, another sign that cancer was good for me. The old me would have been counting the days until I packed up their lunches and walked them to school. The hours between 9 am and
2 pm were gold to me. This summer, my kids were the gold. I enjoyed the heck out of them. OK, there was one day in June and one day last week that I actually didn’t feel that way, but come on, two days out of three months -- amazing!
Though I look forward to having the freedom of exercising a lot this fall (again, another perk of cancer) and getting a little creative without interruption, I actually tear up when I think of returning home -- alone -- on the first day of school. I can remember skipping home after they were settled into their classrooms. Now, I think I’ll be skipping to pick them up.
I do know that this school year won’t be a repeat of the last school year. A little change is in order. My kids’ days were all about them. Lessons, practices, classes, etc. This season, I hope to change that by focusing on others. When their homework is done, I look forward to volunteering at two local, amazing ministries we connected with this summer.
Life Without Limbs is a ministry founded by Nick Vujicic who was born without arms and legs. I'll repeat that -- born without arms and legs. But you’d never know it. He surfs, golfs and gives the best hugs around. His motto? No limbs, no limits. He travels all over the world sharing his heart for the Lord and his love for his life. I’ve never met anyone more amazing than Nick. In fact, he’s just written a book and is scheduled to be on Oprah! Can you imagine how busy his office will be after Oprah gets a hold of him? Wow. But each time I see him, I am reassured that God does not make mistakes.
And when we’re not at Nick’s ministry, I hope to help out at Joni and Friends. Do you remember Joni Eareckson? She dove into a lake when she was 17 and broke her neck, becoming a quadriplegic. Did that stop her? Nope. Now 43 years later, she’s written over 40 books, paints as if she has no limitations and is in charge of a multitude of world-wide ministries. When we toured her office last week and had the privilege of meeting her, all that kept running through my mind was, “When her accident happened, she thought her life was over... it had only just begun.” Again, I am reassured that God does not make mistakes.
So if you can squeeze in a little “them time” instead of “me time” between homework and practice, we’d love you to join us! I’ve included Nick and Joni's websites so you can arrange a time to be a part of two amazing ministries. And if you don’t live near us or you feel inspired to serve in other ways, please let me know. Leave a comment beneath this post and share with others what organizations your family volunteers for. You might just inspire others to do the same.
So good-bye summer. Good-bye blueberries. Good-bye breakfast at noon. Good-bye Jake and Rachel. May you enjoy a new school year filled with good friends, good teachers and “good times” as Jake likes to say. And before we know it, Christmas vacation
will be here.