I asked my son recently what he wanted to be when he grows up. He is only four years old. (I think its never too early to start thinking about how your kids can pay for your retirement.) We have asked him this question a number of times before. His answers are always entertaining. We never quite know what he is going to say. In the past, his career aspirations have included a gainfully employed lion with big teeth. He also has mentioned wanting to grow up to be a Lego figure–probably from the Star Wars collection. Other plans have included becoming some sort of motorized vehicle, which depending on the day can be anything from a dump truck to a race car, like from the Cars movie. The only real job he has ever mentioned is driving a garbage truck. (He loves Wednesday mornings when the “trash truck” rumbles past the house.) But recently Luke came up with a new future for this adult life. After being asked, “Luke what do you want to be when you grow up” he said, “Dad, I want to be a robot.” I am pretty proud of that option because I have always liked robots too.
You can see from the picture above that he is a creative kid. All that it takes is one brown cardboard box with two holes punched in it for eyes and you have, poof, a robot! Oh, I can’t forget the scary robot teeth that he carved in the box as well. Luke has worn that cardboard robot head all over the house and has developed lots of robot sounding noises that go with his new persona. I love to see Luke’s imagination at work!
The great thing about kids is that they have the uncanny ability to imagine and dream. There is nothing outside the bounds of what they can be or what can happen in their lives. It’s no mistake that Jesus said that we need to be a bit more like children when it comes to faith. We often work so hard to have boxes and categories for everything we believe. We grow up to be so logical about a lot of things about life and God. In many ways, that’s really important. Jesus also said that we need to love God with all of our minds. But, central to being a follower of Jesus is child-like faith. Not childish faith. Not immature faith. Not irresponsible faith. But a child-like faith that can see possibilities that lie beyond what we can touch, see and hear.
As a dad, I have discovered that there is a lot I can learn from my children and the way they look at the world. So, I am taking my cues from Luke–no, I am not dressing up as a robot–but I am trying to imagine a life where the wonder of God is more of an everyday experience.
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