The Way of a Child (Part 1)

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Grandson entering into the mural, somewhere in Malaysia.

The way of a child invites us to enter their world of imagination – which is at the same time – the real world.  They invite us to stop and observe – to exit adult time to enter child-imaginative time.

A child does not live to go from point A to point B. A child lives in what it means “to be”. Thus A, B, and all the points along the circuitous path, are accepted as is.  Each point can be an eternity of presence – a flash of existence.

A child takes all the time there is to be a child, and [absolutely] demands we enter their time in contradiction to our conditions for “quality time”.  The only way to have quality time for a child is to have “quantity” time: loads of unhurried, unscheduled, wasted time in being present.

A child’s secret ingredient – the spice of life not yet evaporated off by aging – is the ability to find the joy quotient in every act. Play becomes the activity through which all of life is learned in the crucible of whimsy.

A child easily accepts who they are after they know they’ve done something wrong, or have been willfully disobedient because, in part, they have a happy forgetfulness to their selfishness and a winsomeness to their own self-worth.

Every moment can be a fresh start, unencumbered by judgements and devaluations.  Every moment – a spark of possibility un-poisoned by past failures that will surely be ancient history in a day. Every start is a fresh start – a child progresses at their own rate – the rate of being cared-for at the speed of timeless love.

For a child:

if there’s a hole – stick your hand in it

a puddle – jump in it

a dial – turn it

a pot – bang it

a lid – lift it

a ball – kick it

a game – play it!

 

For an adult: let yourself go there… again.

There is no more important order of business for a parent than to be present, to feed, to cuddle, to play, to sleep, to wonder, to hear their cries and attend. To love.

“Unless you become like a child,” Jesus invites… let’s see where we go…


For more see: “Invitation to a Mystery.”