Jul 21, 2011

Do the Wave

This week, children across the Vail School District started school. Thousands of parents watched as their precious children dressed up for that first day of school. Thousands of parents waved goodbye. Thousands of children turned to their parents and whispered, "Mom. Dad. Stop that. You're embarrassing me!".

Children change dramatically between kindergarten and 8th grade. One of the biggest changes is that of self consciousness. You can wave at a six-year old all day and they'll wave back at you. But do the same with a high schooler and they'll likely turn to their friends and say, "Who is that crazy person? I have never seen him before in my life!".

After four children, I have certainly learned which actions will cause the most embarrassment in my children. Bwahaaahaahaa.

That's why Dale Price is my hero. This American Fork, Utah dad has taken embarrassment to a new level. On the first day of school last August, Dale decided to dress up in a Halloween costume and wave at his son as the school bus went by. He must have received quite a reaction from his son, Rain, because on the next day, he did it again. He stood in a Charger's uniform and helmet while the bus went by his house. In fact, he did this every day for the whole school year!

He has been Harry Potter, Santa, Elvis, Anakin Skywalker and all sorts of princesses. And the whole neighborhood has pitched in. In fact on his Blog, Dale said that over the course of 170 costumes, he has spent less than $50. "You'd be surprised what neighbors have in their closet", his wife, Rochelle shared.

Rain, doesn't seem to mind. "I just find it funny," he said. "It's nice he can wake up early with me, wave and say goodbye; but it's kind of embarrassing at the same time." The donation button on their website is called "Rain's College/Therapy Fund".

Embarrassment is defined as "an emotional state experienced upon having a socially or professionally unacceptable act or condition witnessed by or revealed to others." The great thing about being a parent is that high school kids don't differentiate between their own actions and those of their parents. So whatever the parent does, the kid associates with their own identity. What power.

We all get embarrassed. But if you have a healthy sense of self-worth and confidence, the impact is greatly reduced. One of the greatest ways to deal with embarrassment is to realize that no human on earth is perfect. But as children of God, we are forgiven. Because Jesus took shame upon himself, we can know that we have been forgiven for any stupid thing we have done. Or any strange thing our parents do.

Blessings,

Pastor David Hook