Well, it’s here…the first day of school. I guess the summer flew by in some ways, but there were moments of “lazy days of summer,” too. All in all, I think I am ready for school to be in and for there to be somewhat of a routine to live by. I know this about myself…I need a time to be somewhere and a time to leave somewhere. I just am NOT that disciplined of a person to accomplish things without a time frame to work with.
The girls were pretty excited today to begin school. Bailey was the winner of the most excited award. She pretty much flew down the stairs this morning with a huge smile on her face. Avery bounded down in her usual fashion, but really her eyes were somewhat open, somewhat closed. She did pay close attention to the details of her wardrobe, however, and for that there’s cause to celebrate. The first day of school is about the only day Avery chooses to look her best. The rest of the days are all up to chance! McKenna was probably the least excited, yet was also the most visible answer to prayer for me. I worry so about her on the first day of school, and well…just about everyday of school. She stays a little nervous, but this year she is in an all girls’ class and seems to be excited about it…especially after we met her teacher and saw her room. The sign on the door when you enter her room reads, “It’s a Girls’ World…Boys Just Live in It.” This should definitely be the mantra of the Hickman household, don’t ya think? We may have found the answer for McKenna. She just might not like boys…period! For all you readers with boys, don’t take offense. We very much…every time I was pregnant…wanted boys, but we sure do love our girls around here. It’s what we’re used to. The way I see it, we’re REALLY gonna love the men our girls marry one day because they will already have lots of practice of loving only one boy in our home, their Daddy! Anyway, McKenna should be fine today. She didn’t make me walk her in class…Thank the LORD!!! They might not have let me in once they took a look at me. I am NOT a morning person and I dress like one, too!
On a serious note, as I was driving home today I heard a little spot on the radio by Max Lucado. He was talking about the influence our children have on the friends and world around them. He made a statement to the effect of how our kids must live their lives loudly for Jesus in front of others. I heard it and I was like, “yes, there’s the words to my heart today.” I want my girls to live unashamedly for Christ in a world that tries to silence their teachers from sharing their faith…to a world that needs them to be a light. As we were given permission to prayerwalk Bailey’s and Avery’s school this past Saturday, I thought about not taking my girls with us. Jeff and I both asked ourselves, “why would we NOT take them?” They need to pray over that place just as much, if not more, than we do. We went from room to room that they would be in during their school day and let me tell ya…the Holy Spirit fell on that place, right in the midst of our family as we joined hands and petitioned God on behalf of the school. It was the moment that Bailey prayed that I most sensed His presence. She prayed boldly for the teachers she would have, that if they did not know Christ, that they would know Him…for the protection and salvation of her friends…and for fun at school! It touched my heart so profoundly. I used to want to shield my kids from the world and keep them up under my “wing.” Bailey’s prayers confirmed what has been in my heart for the five years we have lived here, and that is that I want my girls to be the ones to lead their teachers and classmates to Christ. If they are not in there doing it, who will be? As our church teaches us to GO to the people and don’t expect them to come to us, that is where I want to find my children, too…GOING to the people and living very loud for Jesus! They will have influence that I may not have. So, that is the prayer of my heart today, that the girls, of course, will be protected and full of peace today, but most of all that no time would be wasted sharing the love of Jesus with those around them. I hope and pray that I am teaching my girls to not be afraid of the world, but embrace it and love it. Our prayer on Saturday was that at the end of the year the blessings of this year would be too numerous to count. I sure was excited about today being the first day of school, just like Bailey was, but I already can’t wait until the last day of school because I know my God has so much He is ready to do! I can hardly wait, can you?