'My child loves to learn!'

Chips off the ol’ block

Chips off the ol’ block

Chips off the ol’ block

Saturday, February 18th, 2012

Last Friday little Owen in Junior Kindergarten stopped me in the hallway. Looking up at me as if seeing me for the very first time, and in a manner indicative of some newly discovered phenomenon, he  said, “Hey! I saw you in worship this morning!” (Funny thing is that I have been leading worship every Friday since school began in September. Apparently my presence there hasn’t made much of an impression!) I bent down and asked him if he liked worship. In a matter of fact kind of way he replied, “Yeah…well….not really. I just like playing and gym.”

I sincerely appreciate the honesty and candor of children. They tell it like it is, whether or not we adults like to hear it. When children feel safe and comfortable with someone, they begin to trust, and eventually have no trouble unmasking their wit and playfulness. Two such examples occur to me:

Jasmine, in grade seven, is one of our international students from Korea. She has been with us almost two years, and in that time I have come to appreciate her intellect, her gentle spirit, and her ability to engage in sarcastic banter. Occasionally I drive her and her brother home from school. The other day I was kidding them that I was going to just drop them off somewhere, and they would surely get lost. Jasmine was quick to reply, “Yeah, well it would be easy to get you lost. All I would have to do is make a trail of cookies into the bush, and we would never see you again.”

I was filling in for Madame Wu in the grade 3-4 class last week. (As usual I was wearing my corduroy blazer, one of two that I keep at the school and wear every day. Just yesterday one of the junior kindergarten kids asked me “Why do you always wear the same clothes?” I didn’t have an answer.) The children were making French valentines. Abigail, in grade four, came up to the desk where I was sitting, showed me the valentine that she was working on. It had a picture of an old man with a big nose, bald head and ragged, mismatched, multi-coloured attire. She sidled up beside me, put the picture down in front of me, then looked at me with an impish grin and casually remarked, “This will probably be you someday.” Then turning to walk away, she tilted her head back towards me and added, “…mostly because, you don’t have any sense of style.”

With children, you know when you have arrived in terms of friendship and trust. It is when they feel comfortable enough to poke a little fun at you and engage in playful banter. My only frustration is that with the kids at Foundation, they are always one step ahead of me with their humour. I can never match their wit.

I hope there is humour in heaven. I am also pretty sure there is, if for no other reason than something Jesus once said. He said, “Let the little children come to me, and forbid them not, for of such is the kingdom of God.” If the kingdom reflects the spirit of children, then for sure, humour will be there, in abundance!

I can only hope that in heaven, God will also be gracious enough to give me a quicker wit, so that for once I will be able to keep up!

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