Sunday, March 3, 2013

I Believe in the Imagination of a Child

As you all know, I have the awesome privilege to work with children. The children I work with have a way of teaching me things; they teach me things when I least expect it. It's almost like they catch me off guard and reveal the heart of the Father to me at the most random times.

As a reward for perfect attendance and good behavior, we took 13 kids to a glow in the dark show downtown at the paramount and then took them to play on the playground and get a sonic drink afterwards. It was a blast! I didn't go today expecting to be taught something by a child or to have my heart convicted. But it happened. God always tends to work when I least expect it.

I don't know how to explain the show we went and saw other than that it was a glow in the dark, underwater adventure. It was very cool and the kids highly enjoyed it. Listening to the kids explain to me what was 'really happening' in the show helped me see their imagination. You don't have to be around a little kid for very long to see their imagination, amazement, and longing for wonder. A child can be a princess for one second and the next a ballerina. A child can go from being an astronaut to a fireman in the span of a few seconds. Children have fascinating imaginations. 

Just like anything imaginary, God is unseen. However, children so easily accept God as God. They so easily believe. Even when their eyes tell them that they can't see God, they innocently believe. The Kingdom of God belongs to those who are like little children. Think back to when you were a little child. How did you view God? I know I saw God as a big man in the clouds. In fact, I saw God as a man made of clouds. He had power and wonder. There's lots of images that little children make God out to be because the answer that God cannot be pictured is not satisfying to them. So, a child has to use their imagination to create God. 

A child so easily believes. 

As adults, we tend to over analyze things. We make God too complicated. We get overshadowed by 'reality' and stop really believing. The logic may not always add up. The wonder disappears. The amazement leaves. And our view of an awesome, powerful God is shattered. This is not to say that this is what always happens. I simply want to point out that we would do well to learn about imagination from children. 

As adults, a lot of us close are minds. We make our minds up about stuff and only see things one way. But if we open up our eyes of faith through the eyes of a child's imagination--the world holds so many more possibilities. It takes faith--it takes trust--it takes the possibility to believe in the unseen. It takes imagination. 

Before we can do anything we must imagine the possibility. 
I can't get an A on my test and go through all of the pain and agony of studying unless I imagine what it would be like for me to achieve that A. I've started running over the past several months, and I would not have been able to run 6.5 miles yesterday unless I imagined what it would be like to accomplish that run. In the same way, God has given us the ability to see who we are right now, but to also imagine what it would be like to be who he made us to be. 

I believe that, like a child, our faith is rooted in our ability to imagine. Stop for a second and imagine what it would be like to bring the Kingdom of Heaven to earth right this moment. Would that change how you treated the poor? Your family? Your friends? Would you seek justice more? Would you love more? How would that change what you are doing right this very second?  It's in our imagination of what God intended us to be that we can find the inspiration and motivation to seek Him with all of our hearts. Lord, give us the imagination of a child.  I am blessed beyond measure to be surrounded by children who teach me to use my imagination to further the Kingdom of God.

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