george hancock stefanOn the 11th of June, we celebrated Children’s Sunday at our church. At that service, the majority of things are done by our children and youth--songs, Bible readings, collecting the offering, and sometimes even the sermon. This particular Sunday united almost everyone in the congregation as we sang the all-time favorite song of the Sunday School children—“Zacchaeus was a wee little man, a wee little man was he.” The song is simple but it was fascinating to see the whole church doing the hand motions. The adults were trying to  help the children and the children were trying to help the adults. The expressions on everyone’s faces were priceless.

Once a month, I speak to the children in the Sunday School. I have done mini-sermons on flowers, flags, ties, stamps, famous stories from the Bible, and even furniture in the church. The best ones happen when a number of children are willing to help the pastor with his presentation. Even though the presentation does not go in the intended direction, it communicates to the children in fantastic ways.

Now that my four daughters are grown, I get to experience things again with my grandchildren. I always enjoyed reading to my children and now I have the opportunity to read to my grandchildren or, even better, to tell stories to them and hear theirs. I also have fun coloring with them. They question is always whether you can stay inside the lines, and sometimes I am as bad as my little granddaughter.

My grandson knows that when the two of us go out, I do not take my phone and he does not bring his iPad. It took a while to get used to the rules with Buni (Romanian for Grandpa), but we are enjoying our times together. At our last brunch, we talked about mythology. I have studied Greek and Roman mythologies and did fairly well in our discussion, even when he quizzed me. Then we moved to Nordic mythology and I knew nothing.  When we came home, he called his mother to let her know that Buni flunked Nordic mythology.  I promised him that I will study and be ready for the next time.

One of my favorite items in my office is a sculpture that my children gave me many years ago. It has a father’s head with a child sitting on his shoulders and wrapping their arms around his neck. The funny part is that the child covers the eyes of his father as they are walking. For me the interpretation was not only that they are walking together, but that they are playing a game of trust. The father trusts his child for direction as he is taking his next steps and the child trusts the father to carry her around his neck without dropping her.

Enjoying the little things of life reminds me that Jesus said unless we become like little children, we shall not enter the Kingdom of God. The children have joy, confidence, and trust and they know that laughter that is the best medicine.