Tag Archives: Childlike

Remember the days when the smallest thing was the most fascinating thing ever?

Remember the days when what is now commonplace was o so amazing?

Remember the days when what is now a nuisance was actually something you excited talked about for weeks?

This week I had a twenty minute conversation with an 8 year old about the wonders of flying economy class...

"You have a TV in the seat in front of you! And you can watch anything you like, even Horrid Henry. And there's a thing for your drink by your arm. And  tray that goes in front of you like this. And they bring you really good food - two lots of food. Lunch and dinner. And they bring you pillows. And they bring you drinks. And there's even something to put your feet on."

All this from a child I who usually only answers my questions with "Yes" or "No." It's in the detail.

Remember when the world was fascinating?

This week I'm looking into the detail of everyday life to rediscover childlike wonder.

Watch this:

For real. You will not regret it. Best 41 seconds of the day.*

Poor kid. You can see The Fear. You can see he most definitely regrets his actions. You can see he has an understanding of wrong and right. You can see that he's frantically searching for a way out, anything to help him escape punishment and "the cawps". And then he lands on the one thing he hopes will save him, "I'm your son! I'm your son!" He places his hope of salvation in his relationship with his mother, trusting that it will save him (can you see where I'm going with this yet?).

The fear of God.

Maybe if I understood the Awesome** majesty of God better I would be more like this kid when I consider my actions. Because I'm pretty certain that one day I will stand before God pleading, much like that child, "I'm your daughter. Jesus has saved me. Jesus has saved me." If I were of a more charismatic persuasion I would definitely be 'pleading the blood.' And quite rightly so.

Sometimes its easy to forget that God is Holy - is sacred, is pure, is perfect. Sometimes its easy to forget that a sacrifice was made so that we could freely approach God and ask for forgiveness. 

Maybe, if I had half as much fear as this kid I would examine my motives more often and think three hundred times before making a decision. 

Not that we should live bawling our eyes out everyday. But a healthy amount of trepidation wouldn't go amiss.


*Unless, like one of my flatmates, you just think its horrible that he's so scared. Maybe I just need a Sense of Humour Adjustment. 

** Please note the correct use of awesome. It's not a word to be bandied around for every situation like that Christmas present you keep re-gifting but seems to find its way back to you. 

Shout out to my brother who first notified me of this internet gold. Shout out to the mum who managed to drive and film this, and then uploaded it to the world wide web.

So last Saturday I spent a few hours hanging around one of the entrances to the Millwall football ground trying to persuade everyone who went by to donate some money to the Trussell Trust. Yeah, at Millwall – the team with the reputation for having the nicest fans in the country.
Why was I there? Good Question (those mind reading psych lectures have really paid off) and one I asked myself several times over the course of the day. This crazy/amazing lady called Alex was doing a 24 hour run in order to raise money for the Trussell Trust foodbank network.
Yes, 24 hours of non-stop running.
I don’t understand how it works either. I can barely stay awake for 24 hours let alone run at the same time. Like I said, crazy/amazing. She started on the track at the Crystal Palace Sports Centre on Friday afternoon and then kept running till she lapped the pitch during half-time of the Millwall game. You can still donate: http://www.justgiving.com/AlexFoodbank24hour.
So there I was, bucket in hand, fake smiling so much I felt like Barbie and getting sick of hearing myself say “We’re collecting for the foodbank network” when I was reminded of the vast spectrum of generosity (I usually get this epiphany during supermarket collections).
At one end you have those who ignore you as they walk past muttering something about 'charity muggers' (Hello! I am right next to you! I'm not deaf so say it to my face!), and at the other end you have those who donate notes rather than coins without you even having to ask. In-between you get those who give you two coppers from their fist full of change and those who dig around in their pockets for five minutes and give a few pounds. And then there’s those who ask where the money goes and give their stamp of approval that it’s to help people in the UK. I’m not wanting to judge people’s generosity (I have been several of these people), what they do with their money is between them and God, but I was just reminded of how different we are.
My favourite moment of the day was when a kid, around 6 years old, pulled on his Dad’s sleeve asking for money to give. I doubt he had any idea what I was collecting for, but something in him wanted to give money away. Maybe because he doesn't have any money of his own, giving away his Dad's money is an easy thing to do (hmmm, I think there's a lesson here). It was totally worth standing in the freezing cold and being called "flower" and "love" by scary Millwall fans more times than I can count  just to see that kid make his Dad stop and search for some money. O the things you can learn from children...

I must confess – I LOVE TED talks. I've lost many an hour watching inspiring talks given by some amazing people. I came across this one the other day:

Interesting ideas right? I want to focus on one point she made early on - "Kids can be full of inspiring aspirations and hopeful thinking... Kids don't think of the limitations of how hard it can be..."

So what’s your child-like idea? What would you create if you didn’t see limitations and had an ocean of optimism?
I would run a community centre, right in the heart of a community that doesn’t have much going for it. It would be a place that everyone goes to. A place of belonging, learning, acceptance and inspiration. A place for the very very young, the very very old and everyone in-between.
We would run English classes, healthy living classes, art classes, reading groups, youth groups, mother and baby groups, sports groups, mentoring programmes, debt counselling, a Foodbank, a drop-in centre, computer classes, dance classes, homework help classes, tutoring groups, cooking groups, a giant kids play area, a giant cafe for the grownups, a studio for all the kids into music, a skate park for all the kids into skating, a community garden and vegetable plots. A maybe, just maybe we’d have a climbing wall, gym and swimming pool. We'd have a team of social workers, mentors, counsellors and youth workers.
It would be a place of joy and community and love.
Now all I need to do is write a list of what needs to be to achieve it and start crossing things off – simple.
So while I don’t encourage being childish (unless you’re a child) I do encourage dreaming the big dreams of children and then seeing how you can make them happen.
What would your child-like idea look like?
P.S. Am I the only one intimidated by this girl?