February 27, 2008

Spiritual Birthdays and Tacos

Yesterday was Dawson's Spiritual Birthday and next Wednesday is Travis's. When our kids were little there'd be God-talk-times, but there seems to be a definite time when children ask deeper questions and want to commit their life to God. Monte said he did it when he was eight, soon after realizing that his dad wasn't 'God' and in control of everything. He simply transferred that trust in his dad to trust in God.

I wrote these times on the calendar for each of our kids, calling them their 'spiritual birthday'. Then each year we'd celebrate that birthday with a special treasure hunt meal. The meal needs to have a lot of condiments that we can hide around the house. Since curry (which makes a great treasure hunt meal) isn't a favorite of my kids, we tended to do a taco meal. We'd make up riddles as clues to be left with each food item, guiding them to the next. Eventually everything is at the table and we can eat. There's a final note at their plate reminding them of their treasure in Heaven.

I quick fry corn tortillas so they're soft. Then there's bowls of cooked ground meat, grated cheese, chopped tomatoes, lettuce, green onions, and sour cream, and sometimes guacamole, chips and salsa, and maybe beans. It's one of my favorite childhood meals I grew up with, and my family loves it too. I prefer the soft cooked shells to the traditional crisp shells because the first bite tends to crack the shell down the middle and everything falls out! If you travel to Mexico soft corn tacos is traditional.

I still remember the first time we did this - and we usually retell the story. Heather was just learning to read. Monte was out of town and my sister Kelli was living with us (and that's another story!) so I wrote out very simple clues. Travis, not able to read yet, was practically hanging on to Heather's shirt tails waiting for her to sound out the clues so they could run and find the food. Like she'd be saying, "Look in the re-frig g g g ..." with a hard 'g' sound, as she was slowly walking upstairs. Finally I said, "The refrigerator is not upstairs!" And they'd take off running and laughing.

When Deuteronomy says several times, "teach the children diligently", "tell the children" - this is kinda like another commemoration as is the Lord's Supper and Passover. I'll tell you, our kids never grew up wondering if they were a Christian or not. And what great memories we have celebrating (partying) together around God's Truth and Presence in our lives!

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