One evening last week, I was sitting with a pajama-clad Matthew at the dining room table while he finished his homework.
As he carefully wrote his letters and did his number sheets, I noticed an ant creeping across the table in front of us. We get ants periodically, in the wintertime especially. I did a few index-finger-flicks and on about the third one I made contact, sending the ant neatly out of my line of vision (and, surely, to a premature end).
Matthew, hearing the repeated snap of my finger, looked up from his work. “What are you doing, Mommy?”
“I saw an ant on the table, so I flicked it away.”
Matthew looked at me over his pencil, blue eyes fixed on mine. “Why?” he asked in a tone that was a disconcerting blend of sweet kindergarten earnestness and pure teenage attitude. “It’s part of God’s creation.”
I wanted to laugh, but I didn’t. He was completely serious. And, for that matter, he was right.
St. Francis would totally approve.