[The above picture is of my daughter’s face covered in butt cream. She figured it helped her little brother’s bottom, it must be nice for the face too, right?]
Ever since my daughter was two and we caught her making Rice Crispy Treats early one Saturday morning (the butter in the microwave for 17 minutes), we’ve seen her motto in action: “It’s easier to ask for forgiveness than permission.” Even as a 10-year-old, she’s done things that make me raise my eyebrows and slap my forehead. I want to ask, “What in the world would make you think that was a good idea?”
The answer? She doesn’t give it much contemplation before she tries it. Her impulsive and confident personality loves to explore, attempt, and endeavor. Why not give it a shot? Some things have failed, but more often than not, many things have been incredible successes. When she puts her mind to it, watch out.
I can be critical; okay, yes, I see what I already wrote. But the reality is, she’s not so different from her ol’ mom. Over the decades of being an adult, I’ve slowed down some and paused before acting (somewhat), but in my twenties, I charged full speed ahead into my ideas–some might have even called me a little reckless (which is hard to even write, as I consider my primary virtues now to be responsible and dependable). Anyway, I started a mural-painting business, which was super-fun, but not marketable for a small town making mostly minimum wages. I also researched and took a ServSafe class and got myself some liability insurance, presenting myself as a Personal Chef. I worked for one well-known family in town for a brief stint; not sure why I quit, but it wasn’t a good fit for either of us. Working at a tea room was much better. Later on, because I have 12 years experience as an English professor, I launched yet another LLC for online editing. I did a couple of books and helped some students with papers, but again, my area of expertise is not marketing, and I eventually let that business go as well.
Looking back, I guess I’m not afraid to try new things. Some of my ideas have been better than others, but sometimes my concepts, “Oh, that would be a good thing to do for God and my family,” have just been distractions from what He really called me to do. I love what one Bible-study sister said, “It’s good each year to push the reset button and see what needs to stay and what needs to go.”
While reading in 2 Samuel 7 this morning, I was struck my David’s idea. He wanted to build God a temple. Didn’t seem right that the king was sitting in a palace and the King of kings was out in a tent. Good idea, right? Nathan, the prophet thought so too: “He told the king, ‘Go and do all that is on your mind, for the LORD is with you.'”(2 Sam. 7:3).
Well, the Lord was with David, but He wasn’t in the plan. That night, He went to Nathan and corrected his thinking. “The Lord declares to you: The Lord himself will make a house for you. […] I will raise up after you your descendant, who will come from your body, and I will establish his kingdom. He is the one who will build a house for my name, and I will establish he throne of his kingdom forever” (7:11-13).
Good idea, David, but it’s Solomon, your son, who will carry it out for me. Not you. Makes me wonder what my daughter will accomplish that I never did/could. I’m a rather goal-oriented, task-driven person, but she already has more ambition than I did when I was twice her age. With all her drive and determination, I knew she’d one day conquer the world–or destroy it, but that was when she was 3, so I won’t hold it against her.