There’s just something magical about being around little children. Without even trying to notice, you just can’t help but see their obvious innocence and optimism about life.
William Blake said this, “Know what it is to be a child… to see a world in a grain of sand and heaven in a wild flower; hold infinity in the palm of your hand and eternity in an hour.”
Our six year old son, Seth, loves building and exploring outside, and it’s so entertaining to just sit back at watch his imagination and wonder of the world around him glow on his face. He takes the time to see amazing and wonderful things in life that I would have never noticed.
I find myself guilty at times of losing this wonder about life. It was just a few weeks ago that Seth was playing outside in the dirt in the backyard, and he excitedly asked me to come and check something out. My response was nothing short of half-hearted and uninterested. In my mind, I was too busy dealing with “big people” things to bother with the hidden wonders of the dirt. At the time, it just seemed to be too trivial of a matter to bother with. Ever been there?
When was the last time that you…
- Created imaginary animals out of the clouds with one of your kids?
- Counted the petals on a flower as you picked them off one by one?
- Found something simple in God’s creation that just amazed you?
Why is it that as we get older, we lose that sense of wonder and simplicity about the way life is or at least the way life should be? Somehow the natural wear and tear of life seems to erode our childish optimism and perspective.
Louise Imogen Guiney once said, “Children are born optimists and we slowly educate them out of their heresy.”
How sad, that many times, we as adults, are the ones who rain on our children’s parades by trying to bring them into “reality” rather than allowing them to clear up the clouds for us and give us a fresh and untainted perspective.
Sometimes our children so easily see the good in things, but we so quickly point out the bad.
Our kids try to see life for what it should be, and we’re right there to get them in line with the idea that “life’s just not fair” or “this is just the way it is.”
Just because we aren’t able to remember such a world or willing to live in such a world doesn’t mean that we can’t do our best to protect the innocence and purity of our children’s minds.
Life is tough, and sometimes we do have to help give our kids a reality check, but that doesn’t always mean that we have to expect them to think or act like adults. In fact, we would do well to learn from them and sometimes go back to changing some of our ways of thinking to theirs.
Gold City sang a song a few years ago entitled “What Children Believe”which says:
Love lasts forever.
Mom and Daddies stay together.
The cheaters never win.
And a promise is something you keep.
It’s bad to lie, but it’s okay to cry.
Dreams never die.
And faith is all you need.
Ain’t it crazy what children believe.
Never lose the wonder of who God is, of what He is doing in the world around you, and how seeing it through the eyes of a child can change even some of us old, calloused, big people.
Make some time over this holiday weekend to refresh yourself, as well as your family, by reminding them that you’re never too old to enjoy the wonder of being a child.