We’ve all been there…when the best-laid plans fail; when life throws a curve ball; when it rains on our parade. It is easy to feel discouraged and defeated in the midst of the storm. We’ve all heard the old adages about learning to dance in the rain, or making lemonade out of lemons…but if you’ve gone through a difficult time (or fifty), you know as well as I do that it is easier said than done!
I worked with children through counseling for a number of years. I've found they tend to be more resilient, and weather life’s storms, better than adults. So, what's their secret?
We have a young daughter, Kendra. She is quite the character! She is sweet and sassy, strong and independent--and she has an unbelievable imagination. Not only does she have a very active imagination, but she also speaks with such authority and detail that people believe every word she says! Thankfully, most of what she says is imaginary, otherwise we would have about 100 children and animals, and she would already be a Broadway star!
With Kendra being our firstborn, we are learning and growing together every day. And as I sit in my living room watching rain pour down while my daughter giggles with delight and attempts to catch a raindrop on her tongue, I am inspired to share three lessons I have learned from her already:
Lesson #1: It’s okay to throw a quick fit once in a while.
- Let’s face it, life is not fair and it can be extremely frustrating at times. It’s natural, and even healthy, to experience a wave of emotions. The trick is to make sure you are riding the wave back to shore and not allowing it to pull you (or those around you) down.
Lesson #2: Use your imagination!
- When things don’t turn out the way you expect, sometimes you need to tap into your imagination. This is a quick (and fun) way to change your perspective and help you move from fearing the worst when facing the giants to envisioning what life will be like in your Promised Land (read Numbers 13 to learn more). It’s also a great way to remain thankful and hold tight to the promises God has made you.
Lesson #3: Sometimes you just have to laugh!
- If things don’t go your way, try to find humor in the situation. If you can’t find any humor in the situation, then intentionally strengthen yourself with joy. Joy is referenced approximately 200 times (depending on your translation of choice) throughout the Bible. If you are lacking joy in your life, I encourage you to do a word study to learn how to tap into the joy of the Lord, which is one of the fruits of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22)
We can learn so much from children if we allow ourselves to! They exude the love of God, the passion of God, the faith and freedom of God, and the forgiveness of God in such a beautiful and pure way. I know I, personally, am challenged daily as I observe and interact with my two sweet babies.
I’ll leave you with Jesus’s words about children:
Matthew 18:2-4 (AMP) He called a little child and set him before them, and said, “I assure you and most solemnly say to you, unless you repent [that is, change your inner self – your old way of thinking, live changed lives] and become like children [trusting, humble, and forgiving], you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever humbles himself like a child is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.
What have you learned from children? Leave a comment and join the conversation!