The rest of the story (an answered prayer)

Following up on yesterday’s post, I wanted to share the rest of the story and also to thank those of you who have written comments or notes to me about it. I feel compelled to say that although I am very proud of how my kids are growing, it’s not we…hubby and I…who deserve credit for moments like that. Really, my example isn’t always good. I fight “no” in my own life, I struggle with it, and I am not always (not often?) graceful in that. We do the best we know how, muddle through, make mistakes and pick up again and carry on. I’m always worried that our lives sound and look picture-perfect here in this little cyber-space, and they’re not…we’re just a family getting by each day by the grace of God, some days more gracefully than others. There’s a beauty in that, too. We lean on Him, learn the beauty of forgivness and mercy and grace.


One thing that I am thankful for is that God often seems to answer young children’s prayers quickly and in ways that are easy to see. I love that about Him! As Middle Child was bending to His will and accepting no with thanksgiving, a great thing happened. One option the kids had considered before deciding on Guinea Pigs was breeding fancy mice. They discovered it was very hard to find a pair of the type they wanted, and after much research they looked into fancy rats, which were also not easy to find and tended to be as expensive as a Guinea Pig when you could find them.

I’m not a fan of rats, let me just insert this here. I like mice, hamsters, bunny rabbits…for some reason, rats just don’t do it for me.

However, not long after our family prayer I was looking at some classified ads and found three Rex Rats for sale….for a fraction of the cost we would have expected them to be. I showed the kids, we called on them, and the next day the kids had a pair of very cute baby rats, with curly fur and whiskers. We brought the third rat home for friends of ours, who luckily know quite a bit about rats and can give us tips on rat ownership.

Am I as thrilled at the prospect of my kids running a “Rattery” as I was about the Guinea Pigs? Nope. But the kids are, and that’s what counts.

God is good whether or not we get what we want, and whether or not He immediately replaces what we want with something better then we could have thought up on our own. But I’m so happy that He worked it out this way…as an adult I should be able to wait years (even a lifetime!) to reap the benefits of submission to His will. But it’s a wonderful lesson for the children to get to see this so quickly, so that the connections will be easy for their young hearts to see.

He knows what we need and what will make us happy even more then we ourselves do, and we can rest in that.

If that lesson means that I need to learn to love….rats….then so be it! I must admit, they are actually quite cute and they are very good natured. I’m getting attached to them and I can see why people say they make great pets. It’s going to be a fun adventure!

5 thoughts on “The rest of the story (an answered prayer)

  • March 18, 2009 at 1:51 pm

    I read you previous post last night and was heading over this morning to comment. That was beautiful of your youngster and a great example of the Spirit present in her life. I’m sure that is what brings you joy, more than to know that you do a great job (which you do) but to know that the Spirit is within her. That she was truly praying from the Spirit, as we all should, b/c no one can be thankful for a “no” in their own strength. You aren’t painting a picture of your “perfect” life here, but rather the “perfection” we can get through Holy Spirit.
    P.S. Rats are better than hamster’s b/c they don’t bite and they don’t stink as bad as Guinea pigs. You just have to get past that tail!

  • March 18, 2009 at 2:08 pm

    Molly, you hit the nail on the head! Yes, it’s the Spirit moving in them and not anything that I do that brings me joy! I couldn’t possibly teach them everything they need to know to make good choices in every situation they may come across, but if they’re able to be in the Spirit they’ll be led in the right direction. Thanks for your words, they are so true.

    And yes, the rats are really very sweet and very social. They’re also easier to take care of, which is wonderful! And I’m learning to love the tails…that’s exactly what I didn’t like about them before. :o)

  • March 18, 2009 at 5:09 pm

    learning to love rats…smile,
    i just loved the rest of the story.

  • March 18, 2009 at 9:28 pm

    It’s such a wonderful moment when we hear the Holy Spirit speaking through the mouth of one of our kids! I loved your post on your daughter’s prayer….

    As to guinea pigs versus rats, I should share our experiences with you. I have four adult children (ages 28 – 33), and they had both hamsters and rats for pets when they were small.

    The guinea pigs were MEAN! They would bite without warning and without provocation! But the rats were the SWEETEST pets my kids ever had. They never bit anybody.

    In fact, one of the rats was named “Sweety Pie” by my daughter Cheryl, because it was so affectionate and good-natured.

    So, in my opinion, your kids aren’t missing out by not being able to have guinea pigs! 🙂

  • March 19, 2009 at 7:04 am

    Awesome! Rats are really one of the best pets for kids. WAAaaay better than those fancy mice which leave scent trails everywhere they go that just happens to be pee! yuck!

    The rex rats are soo cute. I’m so happy for you all.


Leave a Reply