“Mommy! Mommeeeeeeeeee! I caught a frog!”
Walking through the field admiring the beauty of the giant pine trees and tall grass on our family camping trip revealed a hidden gem we almost never even noticed. Frogs. These were nothing like giant toads but were very tiny baby frogs that looked almost cute.
Without any advanced training or ability to research the proper frog catching technique, my sons jumped right into getting a hold of nature’s little surprise. They quickly learned frog catching requires keen eye observation waiting for just the right moment, a little bit of skill, and a lot of tenderness.
My young son loved his frog so much, he killed it. It was not on purpose, but in his young mind he needed to hold tightly onto the frog so it would not leave his tiny little hands. He accidently did the same thing over and over and cried with each one.
“Mommy, I have a frog and I didn’t kill it!” The screaming and excitement could be heard for miles.
Finally he learned how to hold a frog as he ran over to me with clasped hands just to show me his treasure. Very carefully he peeled back a tiny bit of his hand to reveal what was beginning to look like a cute frog. What I remember most about the moment was his smile from ear to ear and the light in his eyes behind that smile.
Frog after frog was caught and then released by my firstborn son. He was the one catching the frogs over and over for someone else. Pretty soon the frogs disappeared and no more were to be found.
It was only then that I saw my firstborn son’s hands. Empty.
He spent the entire time catching them for his little brother, so when the time of the frogs was over he was left with nothing. He had given it all away.
Fully expecting disappointment in his eyes, it was shocking to see contentment. He was happy. He caught frogs and had fun on the adventure. He helped his brother hold a frog and to him that was what was most important. To me, I saw a bond of brotherhood I will never understand.
“It is more blessed to give than to receive.” (Acts 20:35b)
How often do I hold onto something so tightly that when I open my hands the form is unrecognizable? The very life was destroyed.
Frog catching is just like waiting for those teachable moments in parenting. It requires a keen eye observing my child and knowing my child. Then sitting and waiting for just the right moment. With a little bit of skill and a lot of tenderness, the teachable moments are profound and life changing for me, if not also for my child.
“Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it.” (Proverbs 22:6)
Wendy Wright is a daughter of the King, wife, and mother of two sweet boys who are both home schooled. She consider writing cheaper than therapy, dreams of hiring a maid, and is learning to live with unending fatigue and pain while still trying to understand why God will not remove this thorn from her flesh. Her blog is written for her growth and healing at Choosing Love, shares from her heart at Heart Prints and finds her creative release through Sunflowers Photography.