When my son was small, he asked me so many questions! Why do dogs bark, Mom? How do fish learn to swim underwater? How do eggs grow? (Now, that's a good one - have you tried answering that one, recently?) How do mountains get so tall?
Truly, like all parents, I was in a position of both anxiety and honor - here I was, a first-time parent, in the dubious position of doubling as a walking, talking encyclopedia (uh-oh!). I was this little guy's introduction to the process of the world. Even now, when I look back, I'm not entirely sure that when I offered up my answers, all my facts were right - but I tried the best I could, and that's what counts.
There is something about the earnestness of a child's face, shining up at yours; something about the innocent charm and beauty of his world! And being the loving parents that we are, we don't want to break this tenuous line of trust! Children are so dependent on the adults they need to teach them. We are, after all, the only role models they have for the adult they need to be one day, somewhere down that distant, hazy path into the future, when they grow up.
In some ways, it occurs to me, I think this is how we are with God. We talk to Him, we pray, we ask Him all the questions, and wait hopefully for His answers - yet with one important difference - God (unlike our Mom and Dad) is always right! Whatever it is He plans for us, no matter how unlikely it may seem, no matter how surprising or plain downright absurd it may appear to us at the time (with our worldly blinkers on!) - He's always right! And as we move into our spiritual 'adulthood', as we build on those early questions that we asked of Him as children, we need to reach out and trust Him more and more. Why? Because as we travel through this world, we pick up certain luggage; our own agendas are apt to put confusion in the works - so-called logic, sampled experience, social pressure, imposed desires - these all make the loudest, most clamoring of claims in this world of urgent noise in which we live. It's like advertising bill-boards for the indecisive ego - Listen to me! Listen to me! They say. So, I'm here to remind you, next time they scream at you? Well, here's the thing...
We need to make some space and find that quiet time with God. We need to sit down like a child, and when we ask the questions, we need to let God provide the answers. We need to sit down on that school-room floor (metaphorically speaking!) and cross our legs and listen wide-eyed, like a child; trusting, like the child way back in memory, that we used to be.
Nobody knows us like God.
Nobody loves us, like God.
So, c'mon - Jump in! Let loose that child within. Give God your trust! I guarantee you won't regret it! And by the way... I still haven't quite figured out the exact biology of how that fish stays underwater and learns to swim!
2010 Laura Swindon-Ross. All rights reserved.
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I'm a teacher and Christian writer.