Have you ever noticed that when you go back to a place from your childhood how it isn’t the same? In my mind, I see that spot one way – almost with a “glow” but when I see it as an adult. It’s just not the same.
Same for experiences. As a child, I loved to play on the slip’n’slide on a hot summer day. I would run and throw myself down on the wet slippery plastic, whooping for joy, as I hurtled across the lawn. YEARS later when my children became old enough, I could not wait to buy a slip’n’slide so they could experience the joy I did. I watched them laughing and whooping just like I did as a kid. I was so excited, I couldn’t wait to try.
Big mistake. I was a lot taller, and a bit heavier. (OK, more than a bit.) I waived the kids out of the way and ran, then threw myself onto the wet plastic expecting to experience the same joy I did as a child. I am not sure what came more as a shock to me, the excruciating pain as my body hit the hard and unforgiving ground or the disappointment that it wasn’t as I remembered. I felt robbed.
But life is like that. We hold memories of events and places in our heart, expecting them to never change. But either they change or we do. When I get together with my brothers and we talk about childhood events, we end up disagreeing about what really happened. Each of us were there, but we all came away with a different take or memory of what happened.
I still hold dear the memories of the slip’n’slide, though I will never throw myself down on one again. However, I did go down a 147 foot long slippery ride down a huge steep hill and had a blast. Went down it three times, even though the climb back up was killer. Laughing and screaming as I hurtled down that slippery plastic brought out the little girl I used to be. It’s nice to know she is still in there, and that I’m not afraid to have fun.
We dream huge dreams as children. As we grow and experience defeat, fear, or other events, the dreams get smaller. We grow more hesitant and shy. Afraid to get burned, laughed at, or hurt.
Oh to be more childlike – not childish. Big difference. Childlike people have faith. they see the possibilities in spite of the fear. They maintain a state of wonder. I want to be childlike. Jesus said we cannot enter the kingdom of Heaven unless we become like children. Innocent, trusting, full of faith and wonder – trusting the Father completely. When we live from that place, then miraculous things happen. Hope, Peace, Joy become our companions. Fear is gone. The possibilities are endless.
Childishness is the opposite. A childish person is full of fear, always complaining, always disappointed. They are peevish and it’s always “not fair.” They cry and whine all the time. It’s always everyone else’s fault and everyone else’s responsibility to fix them. They do not have joy or peace. They do not have hope. They prefer whining to wonder.
I am so grateful that my Father has my hand and we are on an adventure every day. Even the hard days where everything goes wrong, can be an opportunity of wonder. The choice is mine. Will I allow my circumstances to steal the joy that my Father has for me? Or will I look at these circumstances as an opportunity to see what my Father is doing in my life. Better yet, to know that I am not alone that He is with me and that there is something good that will come out of it no matter how bad things may seem. He sees what I cannot – AND He loves me. Plus He is all powerful and completely in control – I have NOTHING to lose by trusting Him.
Life goes forward, never back. Remembering good memories is good, but making better memories is even better. Making them with an all powerful Father, is mind blowing.
Dream on! Live big!