mercy, grace, and marshmallows

when i try to explain the concept of grace to my children, i often stumble over my words. i often say things like 
"grace is getting what you don't deserve" or my personal favorite, "grace is a hug when you deserve a spanking." still, i find the concept difficult to put into words. 

so i am thankful when little life experiences come along that show an everyday example of grace

who knew a s'more at camp honey's would be the perfect example of grace and mercy.

it is a given that if there is a fire pit at the cabin, there will be a camp fire. who cares if the heat index is well over 100 degrees and roasting anything burns your skin and stings your eyes. there's a fire pit and s'mores in july are so much better than churned ice cream ;)

every year my mom buys a bundle of firewood and whips together a pretty impressive s'mores bar. every year the kids scour the property for sticks and rarely find any stick long enough to avoid second degree burns. what's the next best thing to long stick? a wire coat hanger of course! unfortunately rental cabins are usually low on those too.

this year my competitive angel child ;) found the one and only wire coat hanger on the property. so while her cousins risked second degree burns with their tiny sticks, mary claire was a marshmallow roasting champ with her three foot crooked coat hanger. 

she was the champion until she set it down for a minute. "finders keepers, loser weepers." one minute out of her possession makes her the loser and evie the finder. evie quietly grabbed that bent wire and ran. 

i lost count how many times i heard "that's my stick" and "that's not fair!" ... oh the drama

oh the righteous indignation! my girl huffed and puffed making sure everyone knew that evie had lost her place as mary claire's favorite ;) but mary claire did let her keep the prized wire... because "she is the youngest."

not long after mary claire's dramatic presentation, evie brought her the very first s'more to make it onto a cracker. yes it was covered in dirt and the marshmallow was scorched black... but it had love written all over it.

i was so excited, "mary claire, THIS is an example of grace! a gift be given out of love, not obligation. even after all of your unkind words, evie showed you undeserving love. just like Jesus does for us every day." i mentally high fived myself.
mary claire's wheels were turning. 

"mom, evie may have shown grace. but i showed her mercy. because she took stole my stick!"

enough said :) i un-high fived myself and mary claire dropped the mic
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