What is being said....

"I need dessert for my blood sugar."

Mallory, 7 yrs.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Chicken McNuggets and Jesus

Tonight was Guys Night Out and I took the boys to McDonalds after soccer practice so they could use their gift cards Aunt Colleen gave them for their birthdays (thanks Colleen).

Hatcher had ordered a 6 piece Chicken McNugget Happy Meal with his card, Bergen got an adult Big Mac meal with his (yes he ate it. we're in trouble when he becomes a teenager). I only had $3 in my pocket, so I just got a couple of items off the dollar menu (this is important to the story later).

As we sit down to the table, Hatch opens his Happy Meal and there are two boxes of 6 piece McNuggets. (How someone doesn't already see a box of chicken in a Happy Meal and places a second one in there is beyond me.) I'm thinking "Alright, free food!" (remember I only had $3 and didn't get much to begin with) then Bergen starts to pray for the meal. It strikes me as ironic that my son (all of 8 years old) is praying to our Lord & Savior, and I'm excited about chicken we didn't pay for. I start to feel ashamed at my reaction and wish I could hide.

As we eat and talk about politics (CNN was on the tube), I'm thinking about my options. One, I could go to the counter and return the chicken, knowing they'll just throw it in the trash. Two, I could go pay for the chicken with my debt card. Or three, I could eat the chicken without paying and nobody would know any better. It's not as if McDonalds is going to go broke over a 6 piece McNugget. Besides it was their fault.

Of course I had made up my mind to pay for the nuggets (I was hungry), but decided to ask the boys what they thought. Bergen said "We'd better pay for them. I don't want to be a restaurant thief." Hatcher said "Yeah, we should pay for them" (he says whatever his big brother says.) I was really proud of the boys and thought, maybe Jynelle and I aren't doing such a bad job after all.

So after we ate, we went up to the counter and ordered a couple of apple pies. I explained the situation to the lady (actually, she was probably still a kid in high school) and that we wanted to pay for the nuggets. She said, "Don't worry about it" and sent us on our way with the pies.

I explained to Bergen that she was in her right to charge us for the nuggets, because I had eaten them, but she showed us grace and didn't make us pay for them (or it could be that the 6 piece McNuggets aren't sold separately and she didn't know how to ring them up). I then asked Bergen if he knew of anybody else that has shown us grace and paid for our debt (or sins) when we deserved to pay for them. Once again he amazed me and said "Jesus, He was nailed to the cross". Proudly, I said "Yes, Jesus." and thought to myself once again, maybe Jynelle and I aren't doing such a bad job after all. Then on the way home, Hatch gets his finger stuck in the air hole on the pie box and starts screaming. My pride went right out the window. (I'll ask for forgiveness of my pride when I go to bed)

Final thought.......

At a home school seminar Jynelle and I went to, the speaker reminded us that we need to be preparing our children for the Kingdom of Heaven, not just graduation from high school (whether we home school or not). I'm finding these opportunities come up all throughout the day and night. The Proverbs are full of commands for fathers to teach their sons (and daughters). I admit, I am not the best teacher or example for my children. But as their father, I am commanded to ".....raise them up in the way of the Lord." I pray nearly every day for help because it is such an awesome responsibility (and privilege). I sometimes forget our kids don't know as much as we think they do and every situation is an opportunity for instruction, no matter how small (like not to stick your finger in an air hole on a McDonald's pie box).



Nelleflower said...

It may seem strange for me to comment on my own blog, but I cannot believe this much verbage came out of my husband!!! Wow is all I have to say about that.......


ryro16 said...

Your story reminds me of the time growing up in Laramie. Money was tight for my parents and as a special treat, we went to Pizza Hut to do a carry-out pizza. While dad was writing a check, he started visiting with the cashier, then put the checkbook in his pocket, took the pizza, and we left. The cashier never asked for the check. The next day my brother and I were with dad at Kinkos and he opened the checkbook to pay and there was the check made out to Pizza Hut still in the checkbook. Wesley asked "What's that dad?" Dad thought for a moment, then said "The check for pizza last night." Then we drove over and paid for the pizza. Both of his sons saw this honesty and integrity and became Republicans. Good job being honest DJ.