Friday, June 20, 2008

Peanut Butter and Faith

Sometimes the most wondrous things can come from the most frustrating. Today was a bad pain day, so I spent the day in bed reading and resting. Doogie was a champ and took care of Mia for me. She took a music book down to the basement to play songs on the keyboard around five o-clock. About a half an hour later I could hear her choked sobs coming up the stairs. Doogie came into the bedroom followed by a crying Mia. He showed me the music book: she had stuck some gum on one of the pages. I put her on the naughty chair for five minutes for abusing the privilege of gum.

After five minutes, the timer went off, and I called for her to come in and then we could talk about it and hug after she said sorry. But when I called her name, she didn't answer at first. After several seconds, she came in slowly saying, "Mommy, I need your help." She was pulling on strands of her hair that seemed a bit more yellow than usual. Then I saw it on the top of her head: a big gob of bright yellow Juicy Fruit gum. It was completely mashed into the top of her head with several tendrils down the right side of her face. I'll admit it: I blew up with lots of Whys??? She couldn't answer, and the only thought in my head was: peanut butter. I put her back on the naughty chair (and made her spit out the rest of the gum, although how she could still have any left I have no idea!) and pulled out the jar of Skippy. I globbed it all over the top of her scalp and squished it through the affected strands while muttering: do you want to have your head shaved? you could lose all of your beautiful blonde hair, etc.

I reset the timer and ran to the laptop to make sure that peanut butter actually worked. The first site I came to recommended both peanut butter and olive oil but said that it needed to sit for 5-15 minutes. I assembled my tools: a comb, two towels for hair washing, shampoo/conditioner, and paper towels. Doogie was my assistant. I explained to Mia that the process was going to probably hurt. I wasn't going to try to hurt her, but there was no way to be gentle, and that sometimes when we do something dumb, we just have to accept the outcome, so crying wouldn't help. For those who have never had to do this (and I never did before Mia), peanut butter absolutely works! And Mia was very brave, never making a whimper. She just asked that when we were all done that we could hug for awhile. I felt so badly for my baby girl, that I promised her lots of hugs.

Afterwards, I washed her hair thoroughly in the sink. Then she changed into pjs and I washed out the comb and grabbed the detangling spray. She sat on my lap while I combed out the snarls. She said, "Mommy, when you're done combing my hair, can I hit myself in the head? I'm so mad at myself." I told her that when we do something wrong, it's best to apologize to the person we hurt and then to God, because being mad at ourselves won't make anything any better. So, she apologized to herself, me, and God. I explained how when we ask God to forgive us, He takes our sins far away from us and will never bring them up again. We talked about heaven and hell and how Jesus had to take the punishment for all of our sins so that we could go to heaven. I told her about how when your name is in the Book of Life, it can never be erased, because you are forgiven.

She said, "Mommy, I want my name in that book." So I explained to her the prayer of salvation. Tell Jesus that you know you can't get into heaven without Him and that you're sorry for your sins. Thank Him for dying for you on the cross, and ask Him to live in your heart. She said, "Mommy, can I pray that prayer right now." While combing out her hair, my baby girl said the sinner's prayer. When she was done, I could hardly speak for the tears in my throat. She looked at me and said, "That's a promise that I'm never going to break," and threw her arms around my neck. She had tears in her eyes too. It was one of the most beautiful moments in my entire life, and all because of some gum.
The first words she said to Jesse when he came in the door were "Daddy, guess what! My sins are all gone! I prayed to Jesus!" May her faith stick far better than the gum did!