This week is the anniversary of Dr. Seuss’ birthday. Theodor “Seuss” Geisel’s influence goes beyond the classroom and reaches into children’s ministry. This week we’ll take a look at how his thoughts can help us as we approach the Big Story we tell.
Adults are obsolete children. – Dr. Seuss
I encountered this phrase years ago while preparing for my senior theater recital. At the time I believe I made some sort of Seussian vow never to allow this to happen to me.
Yet, no matter how hard we try to stop the pull, most of us after time fall into the trap of life and stress and bills and pain and everything else that comes with the responsibility of being a grown up.
We lose our child-like wonder that sees beauty in everything and trusts God no matter what.
As children’s pastors, we must continually strive to create moments in the life of children that will propel their relationship with God through Jesus Christ. My prayer is that they never lose their child-like Wonder at the awesome God of the universe.
I wrote the following post for the 252Basic blog here. When I think about this quote from Dr. Seuss, I think it’s absolutely fitting to include it here.
I wish you could have heard the squeals coming from the row in front of me as the plane accelerated and lifted into the air. Or have seen the wide-eyed glee in the seats next to me as the buildings began looking less like skyscrapers and more like Lego models.
My kids had flown several times as toddlers, but this was the first flight where they were aware of the sheer awe of taking flight.
We only have one first time to experience lift off and landing, soaring above the clouds, and looking down on the tiny cars on the interstate.
This flight didn’t disappoint. My kids were enraptured with WONDER.
I believe this same thing happens when we first encounter the awesome story of the God who created the heavens and the earth, parted the Red Sea, and raised His Son back to life to save us.
When we hear those stories for the first time, they incite WONDER in our hearts. They cause us to squeal with glee that Someone loved His people enough to rescue them time and again.
What about the second or third or twenty-second time we hear those stories?
On our return flight, the kids were more excited about the beverage service than they were about the take off and landing. They were more engrossed in their hand-held games than what was happening outside the plane. From here on out, each time they fly, they’ll take more and more for granted. What once incited WONDER will be ignored.
The same happens when we hear Bible stories again and again. We take the moments of WONDER for granted. We expect God to send the manna, to help the boy kill the giant, and to raise the King of Kings from the dead. We stop being enamored with the most amazing story ever told.
The Orange strategy is built on a scope and cycle grounded in Wonder, Discovery, and Passion. We want incite WONDER in our kids, provoke DISCOVERY of how they fit into God’s Story, and fuel PASSION for them to live out their faith in the real world.
Scope is important. Everyone needs a plan. However, we don’t want to get so lost in the scope that we forget the importance of cycle.
In the scope and cycle of 252 Basics, we return to stories and virtues with an end in mind. We hope that each time a story is told that kids once again encounter an awesome, wonderful God who loves them. We want our kids to feel like they’re hearing these stories for the first time, every time they’re presented.
We hope that you do the same.
We’d love to hear how you’re helping to incite WONDER in your environments! Comment below and share your ideas.