Monday, September 12, 2016

Gummy Bear Behavior

One of the tricks packed away in the church bag for the Regional Broadcast was a package of gummy bears. First off, this is not something that we eat on a regular basis. And while fruit snacks are sort of similar, the novelty of gummy bears and me telling them it is candy, makes it exciting! These were special gummy bears that had to be earned. I explained that to Devin before we even left our home. The only way that he could eat the gummy bears was by good behavior.

The gummy bears only made their appearance twice during the whole meeting. After the intermediate song and again during the closing song. I'm sure the family sitting next to us thought we were crazy to be feeding our kids gummy bears during the closing song. After all, it is practically time to go home! Why on earth are we just now eating the gummy bears?!

For the first half, they earned one gummy bear for every talk that they were reverent for. And by reverent, I mean sitting and doing some activity that was in the reverent bag. We were not expecting silence or even watching the broadcast at this young of an age. The goal was so others around us could hear the broadcast and not be interrupted by our Little Loves AND for them to stay in the chapel. I passed out the gummy bears after we sang the song and then put them away.

The meeting continued. I heard bits and pieces. I certainly did not take notes and do not remember very much. The one impression that I made an effort to write down was not even really about the meeting but rather about being in the right place and doing the right thing regardless of how much I was hearing.

And then the closing song came. I certainly was not planning on letting my kids eat during the closing song. Actually, most of the time songs are when I take everything away. I figure the variety of the song is enough to engage their children. Because my goal for meetings is reverence--not being entertained. But I guess I had not really planned this far in advance. Devin wanted the rest of his gummy bears for good behavior.

Rather than tell him he had to wait until it was over, I just agreed. I figured it caused less commotion. And gave him his earned gummy bears for the number of talks. Well, he immediately wanted to give all of his gummy bears away to the boy sitting beside him. Melt my heart. I made the boy ask his dad first though because I had no idea if he was allergic to something in it. (My brain is now constantly thinking of allergies and ingredients!)

But the boy was allergy free. Devin handed over his hard earned gummy bears. He told me that the boy was being reverent too. Which was true! And with the two of them sitting together, I think they both earned the gummy bears. I gave Devin some more. And Heidi. Heidi also wanted to share her gummy bears with the boy because that's what Devin did. Alright. I gave up on counting the number of earned gummy bears and just gave them each some.

So instead of singing during the closing song, I'm passing out gummy bears and watching my Little Loves act Christlike by their selfless desire to share. Did I learn much from this meeting? No. But my heart was touched. And I'm grateful we were there... gummy bears and all!

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