Have you ever watched kids at play? It’s one of the best things to see. You see kids create incredible stories and live in worlds that could not possibly be in existence, yet it is alive in the minds of children. I think back to when I was a kid; I would fight countless battles against robots in my back yard, save the world from villains as a superhero (with all the powers, duh), and I would win the hearts of all those I defended. Countless battles and I would never lose. Kids come together and join their vast worlds to play for hours on end, going from the wild west to the outer reaches of space. There is truly nothing like watching kids at play, and there is power in their play. I think God wants us to be like that, to think like a kid. A child’s mind is open and they have faith that in everything they pursue, they will achieve. They are not jaded by experiences, they simply want to move forward and change the world around them. I think we need to remember this, I think we need to start thinking like kids again.
Now this is not me writing a post about how we should forget all responsibility and be childish in the way we act. We need to understand that you are not a child, so don’t do childish things. We need to think like a kid, to call back to the wonder and faith in ourselves and the world around us. I thought about this while my sister was talking about the passage in Matthew where Jesus encounters children. Matthew 19: 13-14 says, “Then people brought little children to Jesus for him to place his hands on them and pray for them. But the disciples rebuked them. Jesus said, Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” This passage is a reminder to all of us, because we are the disciples in this story. We are annoyed at the children, thinking that there are more important people, but Jesus replies by telling them that the disciples need to be more like the children. So often in our lives we get caught up in ourselves. We focus on our issues more than our father, we focus on our image more than our heritage, and we focus on being close minded rather than wide eyed and open to anything. Today I want to talk about how we can think more like a kid, because the mind attitude of a kid is what gives us power and what God calls us to do.
I recently started working in the after-school program at a local Montessori school this past week. It has been such a blast already, and one of my favorite parts of it is that I get to help oversee play. I get a chance to listen to kids tell me the game they’re playing, like when one of the students asked if I wanted to play South African crocodiles with him (basically tag, but with a fun narrative to go with it), but I get to witness one of my favorite things: kid rules. Whether its playing pirates or Pokémon, kid rules are in full effect. For those of you who may not know, kid rules are rules put in place to let you always have the upper hand. It’s what allows kids to battle hundreds of zombie robot aliens without dying; no matter how crazy or difficult the task, kid rules allow you to always beat the monster you face. I think we all need to add kid rules in our lives. It’s so easy to let our circumstance define us, I’ve been dealing with that recently, but we don’t have to let this monster defeat us, we can fight back. We can use our kid rule secret weapon, a God who loves us more than anything. That God who died for us is on our side, and when we realize this, we can focus on him and beat any creature that tries to stop us. Depression, shame, abuse, anger; anything can be defeated by living dependently on God. We need to focus on our heavenly father rather than dwell in our circumstance.
Running full steam ahead.
One of the most aww kinds of moments for me happen during pick up. Whether at school or church, at the end of our time together the parents come to pick up their kids. No matter what is going on or how hard a kid is playing, 90 percent of the time as soon as a kid sees their parent, they run full steam ahead. It doesn’t matter if they have to clean up a mess or forget their jacket (happens every time), they run right into the arms of their family. They know who is giving them love, if it’s a biological parent, guardian, step-parent, or grandparent they know who calls them their child. The same needs to be true for us. Why so often do we wait to run into the presence of our creator? We try to fix the problem and clean up the mess, and only when we’ve tried every other option, then we go to Christ. Why? This is so backwards. A doctor doesn’t work on healthy people, he is most effective on the sick. We need to remember that God wants the broken people, we don’t have to be perfect for God to use us. In every moment, good or bad, we need to run full steam ahead towards our king. We need to remember our heritage; that God made us and he loves us more than anything.
Don’t stop dreaming.
One of the hardest things for me to see is people that have given up on a dream, believing that because of their past or situation, that they can’t change the world. I don’t believe that, not for one second. Neither should you. When kids play, they see the good in all things, I remember I used to play superheroes with my friends. We would all choose our favorite comic book character, but sometimes we would need a villain. I would often volunteer to do it, my choice of villain was Venom, he still had powers like Spider-Man plus I could stick my tongue out like him too (worth a google, lol). Even when I played as the villain, we would have a moment where I would become good and help fight a bigger monster. It makes me think about the fact that even kids can grasp the concept that a villain can turn good, no matter how messed up they are. Don’t give up on yourself or someone close to you, God can use anyone. He used Moses when he couldn’t speak in front of a crowd, he used Elijah in the midst of his depression, he used Peter who denied Jesus to build the church, he used Paul who once was a murderer and a terrorist, and he can use you. Don’t stop dreaming.
People always mess with me saying that I’m such a child at heart, and you know, I think I always want to be like that. I never want to become so serious that I forget what it means to have fun and to dream. I want to think like a kid. I want to trust God has me in his hands, I want to find the best in people and in my circumstance, and I want to always know that I have been made in the image of God. I think you need to start thinking differently too. I think you need to start using kid rules to understand that no matter what you’re going though, that God will provide a way. I think you need to remember to run to your father first and remember your heritage. I think you need to start dreaming again, understanding that God has a plan for you and the people in your life. We need to remember that God has a plan for us, he simply wants us to come to him.
So, in the days when it’s hard and you feel drained, think like a kid.