Know Your Worth & Speak Your Truth
Lord, only you know how the pain of learning your whole life to censor every word, thought, emotion, reaction, and expression because of the harm that may come from any such action; especially one that tells truths no one wants to hear, can make a person incapable of being a person at all. You are also aware of the agony that comes from not being with people because you can’t be a people, so I ask you to release those of us who feel such pain with some joy from a these two stories of children who know their truths and are not afraid to express it.
Luke 2:46-49 – 46After three days they found him in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. 47Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers. 48When his parents saw him, they were astonished. His mother said to him, “Son, why have you treated us like this? Your father and I have been anxiously searching for you.”
49“Why were you searching for me?” he asked. “Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?”
Even as a child as young as 12, Jesus knew his worth to his Father; and to the world. I hope this personal story also shows a child who knew his truth and worth in being able to express them with such honesty.
Momma, What’s The Cantina
Being a single mother of 9 & 12 yr old boys is not an easy job. A good support system eased a lot of the stress and also helped with a lot of the responsibility. That support system came from family and friends, religious leaders, teachers and coaches; and pretty much everyone who came into contact with such children. When you are a single mother it really does take a village to raise your children.
Fortunately, there was a place called LaCantina in their village. It was always hectic for her. Teaching school, chauffeuring her boys to practice, and Scouts; not to mention afternoon religion classes and then a second job. Spending time with her girls while venting at the Cantina was her only outlet and opportunity for adult conversation.
Those opportunities were few and far between. Mostly when the boys were with their father every other weekend because the expense of a sitter was a strain on the budget. Most afternoons and evenings were not an option as so many openly disapproved of a single mother who might waste some time socializing. But, she worked hard at all her jobs and was learning her worth, and knew part of that was taking time for herself.
As they were leaving religion class one particular afternoon she was thinking about supper. It seemed weenie spaghetti was the only thing the budget allowed. Good thing the boys enjoyed it, but she knew they’d be sick of it soon and she was already. Her rumination about this was interrupted by a call from her sister, just as she was about to turn into the driveway.
Her older sister had four boys of her own. With all of that, a husband and a house to manage; their talks together were infrequent at best. They usually centered around her calling for the older sister to come and rescue her out of some situation because she needed something brought from home to school, or to get one of the boys from somewhere because she can’t leave work. She usually calls her sister, not the other way around; so she answered in a hurry.
They were having a birthday party at the local bowling alley. Her sister loved her boys and celebrated them greatly. It seemed like there was always a birthday party or event happening to acknowledge her nephews or their efforts. Her first response was that they couldn’t make it. It would’ve been fun, but there was no money for the boys to bowl; add to that, no desire, on her part, to be in a crowd of children after teaching school and religion to other kids the same age.
Her sister, as always, was a godsend. “No money, no problem,” she said. “We also have burgers and cake so you won’t even have to make supper tonight.” But, still, no desire to be around kids again, and for another two hours. Her sister was a mind reader, “Drop them off and call one of your girlfriends, we’ll even make sure they get home safely, you need the night off.”
The boys didn’t even have a chance to get out of the car and put their backpacks away as she reversed out of the drive way and whipped the car around like a race-car driver headed toward a finish line. “Y’all are going to meet Aunt T and her boys at the bowling alley, ‘cause Momma has something to do,” she told them before making immediate calls to her two best girlfriends. “Meet me at the Cantina,” she said into the phone; “I just got the night off, woo hoo!!!” Of course, this prompted the 9 year old to ask, “Momma, what’s the Cantina?” To which, her 12 year old promptly responded “That’s the place where Mommas go to calm their nerves.”