God isn’t really trending – at least I don’t think he is! I don’t know why though because it is the only thing that makes sense to me sometimes – the fact that we are in relationship with God.
I just can’t imagine not finding this truth for myself. My most treasured possession aged 4 was my picture service booklet I took to church. Yes – I was raised to go to church – but more importantly I had an idea that was was a very significant thing that I learn about God. It seemed so big and exciting from where I was standing with my family in our 3 bedroomed house. Yes, we went school and had Birthdays and Christmas and new shoes . . . but this was God – a whole different kettle of fish! I wanted to know who God was and what he might have to do with my life and me.
As I grew older I became more and more convinced that life wasn’t enough just as I saw it and felt it. There was clearly something very big missing. It sounds so cliche but there was a gaping big hole and I had no idea what was supposed to fill it – O Levels, A Levels, a degree, husband, children maybe? But I knew right then and there that those things would not fill it.
I liked the idea of God, the mystery, the journey, the expecting of the unexpected, the puzzling things out with someone so much bigger and wiser than me! I loved that idea and so I chose to pursue it down all the twisty turny roads that have bought me to this point. And I will pursue it for ever!
Let’s tell our children about God. Don’t sell them short and give them the idea that life is just about having things, knowing things, a career, partner, children and holidays. IT ISN’T.
I have a 12 year old who is scared of many things. He is scared of the electrical sockets in our house, the gas fire, the fact that he didn’t have chicken pox, a tiny speck of blood on his finger, an expression on someone’s face, the tone of someone’s voice . . . and the list goes on.
My son has light, colour, pattern and sound sensitivity. Life is naturally more scary to him than others. He is struggling to process all the colours, patterns and sounds in the world. And I totally understand his fear.
So . . . How Can I Help Him to be Less Fearful?
We have tried rationalising things, teaching him more about things like electricity and gas but it doesn’t seem to work. The only thing I can do for my son is to teach him about faith.
I find this pretty hard as my son has a very scientific mind and has learnt that he feels better when he is being very logical and systematic using the left side of his brain. And to live by faith we need to let go into the right side of our brain, where things aren’t rational and logical. They are more feeling based. This is where we make connections and see life as more of a whole, and start to wonder if there might be a bigger plan, and whether we might be part of it.
My son already lives by faith in a way. He often says that things don’t feel right, whether that is food, place, a person or an activity. And he is very strong on these things. However he is also open to change. He told me very strongly that he didn’t want to have anyone massage him the other day. Then when I walked out of a massage with a very nice lady in a very nice place, he said ‘Actually, I think I would like to have a massage!’
When I spoke to my son about faith this morning, I could see deep down that he found it comforting and he said “Well it was a bit of a coincidence that we found our white doves the way we did!” We had been to a pet shop and we spoke to the lady there of my son’s love of pigeons. We had decided to buy a smaller variety of doves called diamond doves, but when we next went to the pet-shop there were 3 beautiful white garden doves in one of the aviaries. They had lost their mother and the lady at the pet-shop had hand reared them. We all knew they were waiting for us!
Call it coincidence or call it synchronicity or go for all out comfort and call it God!
Yesterday I met a friend – someone I hadn’t seen in a long time. We had our first child at the same time and met at a post-natal group. We both shared our love of babies and everything newborn. We both wanted more children but we still only have one chick in our nest whilst she has 3. I was envious, desperate to have more children in our family too. We tried to adopt but it didn’t work out.
What was it I wanted I had to keep wondering. Did I want to look out of the window and see three children on their bikes or in the paddling pool? Did I want to do the school run and proudly drop my 3 little cherubs at the school gate? Did I want the sports days, parents evenings, dance classes and football matches? Did I want the big family Christmases and holidays?
I really thought I did want these things but even the school run with one little chick and parents evenings, sports days, paddling pools and holidays was too much for me! I wanted them to give me this ‘full, complete’ feeling but all they did was seem to take away from my energy and leave me feeling empty. I couldn’t find anyone to talk to in the playground when I collected my son from school, I picked up everyone’s strained stressed tired energy at parent’s evenings, the paddling pool could feel overstimulating on bright light days of summer and holidays, well – I just like the daily small things and my routine best!
When I met my friend yesterday she told me how her busy full life had developed. She was working, running a business, taking her children here, there and everywhere but I didn’t hear the passion in her voice, the excitement I would expect of someone with a full life. She seemed tired. Then all I could say about our life is that my son is home mostly playing computer games with friends, we have doves now and like hover-boarding. But in that moment I didn’t mind that my life may not have sounded full because the one thing that is very full is my heart. And at the end of the day, surely that is what counts.