It’s a sad but true statement. On our recent trek into the Georgia Mountains to visit our time-share cabin in Big Canoe for family vacation, my youngest son learned all to personally how both sad and true it is.
It was our family’s third trip to Big Canoe; a mountain lover’s paradise of lakes, hiking trails, and thankfully- swimming pools. It’s hot, even in the mountains, this time of year. This time we extended the invitation to my husband’s sister and her family to join us. That made twelve of us. Add an extra cousin or two, and grandparents who couldn’t resist seeing all their “grands” together again, and that made sixteen. We can take over a place.
One of the fun events was a family game of Ultimate Frisbee. There was a wide-open field just begging to be played upon. So we obliged. I don’t recall who won, possibly because it wasn’t my team, but who really cares?
The Frisbee fun continued the next day at the pool. The pool happened to be lakeside in the middle of picturesque mountains. The beach area also called to the Frisbee throwers. So once again, they did not disappoint. All was going well until…. “crack!”
And then there was the scream…
…And the blood
There was quite a bit of blood. My ten-year-old was holding his mouth, and my husband was holding him. He had taken a Frisbee to the mouth and in doing so, had misplaced his front tooth. It was nowhere to be found. Suddenly no one really wanted to play Frisbee anymore.
My husband had thrown that fateful Frisbee into the mouth of his own son. Later, he lamented that he had just given his son a lifelong problem to deal with. That may be true, but my son seems to hold no grudges against his dad. Evan forgives really quickly. It’s a character trait that will serve him well in life.
Later that evening, much later, Evan was laughing about the whole thing. He stopped short and said to me, “Hey, you told me earlier when I lost my tooth that one day I would laugh about it. You were right, I’m already laughing!”
Honestly, I didn’t remember saying that, but he remembered. I was in full nurse mode at the time he lost his tooth, and I guess my mouth was running on autopilot.
We’ll have some rough spots to go over getting this tooth taken care of, but I have a lot to learn from my ten-year-old son about forgiveness. He could have been mad with his dad over the whole thing. Who could blame him? Accident or not, he did leave a part of himself on that beach. My husband apologized again and again, but Evan had already forgiven him.
The Bible tells us that God is like that, only in a God-sized way. As believers in, and followers of Christ, we don’t have to ask for forgiveness to receive forgiveness. The forgiveness issue was settled upon our salvation. That debt has been paid in full. Jesus paid all of any sin debt we had, have, or ever will have at Calvary. The asking of forgiveness is for us. We do not ask not knowing what the reply will be. The reply is always the same.
We ask because in asking we are recognizing our own dark shortcomings against the light of his perfection. We are reminded how much we need him, how we belong to him, and desire to be in right relationship with him. There is wonderful freedom in walking in forgiveness.
It’s a beautiful thing, forgiveness. A gift God gives each of us to share with those we are closest to, with those we have never met, and with everyone in between. Forgiveness is an outpouring of his love for us and it is a gift that blesses both the giver and the recipient.
A pretty good reminder from a snaggle toothed ten-year-old.