Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Sometimes I just can't help myself. My compassion and mercy run roughshod over reason and good judgment. Two weeks ago, the center director (not the executive director...the one I am married to) at the Brunswick Carenet asked me to speak to a group of soon-to-be moms about babies and caring for newborns. Of course I was delighted to do it. Well, before the evening was over, I had fallen in love with the girls and heard myself offering to teach the parenting portion of group for the next 6 weeks or so until it is time to begin the Lamaze/medical portion of the class. What was I thinking? I need one more commitment like a drowning man needs more water. But, the deed was done.

The girls and their boyfriends/husbands/mothers attend the class, hopefully become more prepared for labor, delivery and parenting, and accumulate Dedication Dollars that they can redeem for maternity and baby clothes, diapers, cribs and all kinds of baby paraphernalia in the Carenet Baby Store. The girls range in age from 15 to 26, and most are having their first baby. Most are outgoing and most of my attempts to hold the discussion to the topic at hand often prove futile. I challenge them to eat a little healthier than they did last week, drink a little more water and a little less Code Red Mountain Dew, and think about parenting as a long term proposition. I want them to see that small decisions add up to big consequences in the future. Often taking the easy route with a 3 or 6 month old will make parenting a little harder with a 9 month old. Most of them seem to love the mother figure nurturing them...I guess what remains to be seen is if they actually put any of our advise and wisdom into practice.

After last night's class, one girl stayed late to talk to the other leader and I. Despite having just found out she was pregnant last week, she and her fiance have kicked their preparations for marriage and parenthood into high gear. She pulled out her Bible and a Bible Study book that she had recieved at Carenet last week and showed us how she and her fiance had nearly completed the study questions. Then she inquired, "Do you think I could have another Bible so my fiance could have his own while we do the Bible study together?" Doesn't that request just make you smile? While the week has hardly begun, I knew I wouldn't find a better quote of the week than that.


  1. That makes my heart smile!

  2. Natalie, I did not realize you are doing the parenting class. I know it's a big commitment but you are making a difference. You know, it's very easy for Scott & me to give our time to the ministry of Care Net when we know that you & Patrick are DOING the ministry there alongside us. Once again, you have left me in awe of your servant heart and gracious spirit.