I sometimes want to run away from difficult conversations.
Especially those conversations where my children are looking at me with their inquisitive brown eyes and waiting for the “expert” to talk. Or when they boldly say something they’ve heard someone else say just to test the waters and see if I will help them discern if it’s right or wrong.
This morning I was thinking about the start of Lent and imperfect prayer. And I was wondering if I should share this poem by Mary Oliver that is perfect for easing the discomfort of imperfection in prayer.
But then, my child said something in the car that made me think this poem has more than one dimension.
I never thought at 7 we would already be having deep conversations about dignity, humanity, and the beauty of everyone God created. And I feel spectacularly inept every time the moment arises for me to talk openly about inclusion, love, and the men I hope and pray they become.
But I realized something as I bumbled my words in the car this morning…
it doesn’t have to be the blue iris.
Stumbling and bumbling through, then re-evaluating and trying all over again – That is so much better than waiting until you’ve found the perfect words to encourage them to be the people God is begging us all to be.
My prayer today is through the words of Mary Oliver… and that we may continue to have perfectly imperfect conversations with our kids so we start creating the world God longs for.
“It doesn’t have to be the blue iris, ⠀
it could be weeds in a vacant lot, ⠀
or a few small stones;
just pay attention, then patch
a few words together and don’t try⠀
to make them elaborate, this isn’t⠀
a contest but the doorway
into thanks, and a silence in which
another voice may speak.”
Can you start a perfectly, imperfect conversation today with someone?