Saturday my granddaughter went to her first ballet show. It was the Nutcracker performed at Portland Community College with a “tea” afterwards. I’ll have to wait until this afternoon to get the debriefing from her. All Friday she kept saying she wanted to be a ballerina. Last week she wanted to be called “Romeo” the mischievous character in the cartoon show “PJ Masks” where normal kids turn into quasi-superheroes at night while in their pajamas (the PJ in PJ Masks). She did make the distinction that she was a “good” Romeo. She is constantly reminding me that in childhood everything and anything is possible. In time for some reason or other all those childhood choices become narrower and narrower and more societal appropriate. Far be from me to interfere in her magical world of possibilities and tell her that life just isn’t like that. That life is more pragmatic and sometimes utilitarian. No I won’t tell her because I am basking in the warmth of her creativity and marveling at her impossible world that for her, is possible. When I was little I wanted to be all sorts of things from being a cowboy to flying through space at fantastic speeds. Then I wanted to be a filmmaker, then an architect. The last thing I did not want to be was a teacher, the very thing I turned out to be. I have no regrets. It was a good gig. I went with the flow and the flow was good and I think I was/am true to myself.
From today’s reading….
Do not quench the Spirit.
Do not despise prophetic utterances.
Test everything; retain what is good.
Refrain from every kind of evil. (1Thes 5:16 ff)
I know I am not the smartest rock in the bag (assuming rocks are smart) but I know that we cannot continue to move forward without imagination, no matter how absurd and unreal. All sorts of possibilities are within our collective grasp. This week’s news demonstrates that there are still good people out there who have the imagination and hope for a future that sometimes is bland and devoid of hope.
This is the season for hope. A season for the child of hope. We are in a rough patch right now, but I think we as a people can weather this anomaly together. We need to draw on the possibilities of youth and the world that they inhabit. That is one of the great gifts of having or being around children. Who would have thought a child borne into abject poverty and anonymity would grow up to change the world. Whether you are a believer or not in the divinity of Yeshua ben Yosef, history speaks for itself.
My job as grandfather is to keep hope alive, encourage creativity and promote wonder in a world of possibilities with my grand kids, not just during this season of light and hope, but all year long for as long as I can. I will cherish my kids and grandkids whether they are superheroes or rocket scientists or teachers.
…and so it goes…