When your Campfire isn’t Perfect

I was able to sit by a fire and roast a marshmallow with a dear friend of mine this past Sunday.  

Only, it wasn’t just the two of us. It was us… and our husbands… and our kids… and some more kids… and those kids’ parents… and, gosh, whoever else wanted to be at the regional-park-sponsored public event that night. 

Second Sunday Campfire
credit: EBRPD

Sometimes the “campfire” moments—those times when we can really connect with others and hear their stories—are extended and serene, but sometimes they are crowded and quick. 

I typically wish every heart conversation would be the extended and serene variety, but in my current stage of raising three boys, it’s often not an option. And so, I have an option. I could chose to focus on the negative and wish that things were different, or I could use the opportunities given to me to the best of my ability.

We each have a choice: be greedy or be grateful.

This is true when it comes to how many s’mores we get to make around the fire, and it’s true when it comes to the people that God puts in our lives. 

I often fall into the “greedy” category when it comes to my relationships. I want my visits with extended family to be just a few days longer. I want the date night with my husband to be just a little more perfect. I want the time spent snuggling with my boys before bed to be just a little more meaningful. I want my conversations with my friends to last just a little longer. Greedy, greedy, greedy.

Sunday night by the fire, my son, Zeke, asked if he could make himself another s’more at the park. And as I checked his heart with the familiar question, “Are you being greedy or grateful?,” I realized that my own heart probably needed a check, too. Was I being greedy or grateful in this time with my friend and her family?

Earlier that evening, the two of us had easily fallen into comfortable conversation while our kids were busy getting their hands sandy in a science experiment. We shared stories; we asked questions; I encouraged her and the journey she has been walking these last handful of years; she invited me to make plans for our families spend some extended time together. Grateful, grateful, grateful.

I walked away so grateful for her and for the friendship that God has blessed us with. And I am {hoping} to stay thankful for my “campfires” this week, no matter what shape they take.

Imitate God, therefore, in everything you do, because you are his dear children. Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ. He loved us and offered himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God.  For once you were full of darkness, but now you have light from the Lord. So live as people of light! For this light within you produces only what is good and right and true. Ephesians 5:1-2, 8-9

And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful. Colossians 3:15

3 thoughts on “When your Campfire isn’t Perfect

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