Words of wisdom from a seven-year-old: “Sing, dance and be silly… because God wants you to!” I think he has a valid point. Life is way too short to be serious all the time. Why do we as adults have such a hard time taking the time to breathe and just be goofy every once in awhile?
My son sings all the time. While he’s starting to be a bit more inhibited as he gets older, when he’s behind closed doors he knows no constraints. He sings songs he knows and invents silly songs no one knows. He doesn’t care. Singing brings him joy and to him, that’s a priority in life. Oh, how our lives would be brighter if we prioritized the same!
The Bible says that Christ came that we might have life, and life more abundantly (John 10:10). More abundantly than what? Right before that verse, Jesus was talking about the thief coming to steal, kill and destroy. Therefore, I think it’s fair to conclude that Christ came to give us a life that’s more abundant than one void and robbed. And when we are robbed of joy, we are robbed of the fullness of life that can be ours.
Have you ever seen a child twirling and dancing in a random locale? They don’t care if they’re in the park, at the grocery store or in line at the DMV; kids have this amazing ability to dance and care less if anyone is watching. (I’m not sure what would happen if we started twirling around gleefully the next time we’re waiting to get our driver’s license renewed, but I do venture to say it would bring a few smiles and added joy to an otherwise dreary room!)
It wasn’t the motor vehicles office, but Zechariah and I were patiently waiting for what seemed like hours for a fireworks show recently. While we waited, he wanted to play. We didn’t turn to video games and facebook… we turned to each other and started to dance, laugh and play tag. I was cognizant after-the-fact that I was only one of few adults in a crowd of hundreds that wasn’t tuned into my cellphone during the wait. Instead, I was tuned into my son. And I was captivated by his joy, wrapped up in his silliness, and eager to become more like him in the process.
“Unless you become like a little child, you cannot enter the Kingdom of Heaven [which is] righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit” (Matthew 18:3, Romans 14:17).
I want to experience the fullness of God’s Kingdom here on earth and He’s used my silly little son to help me recognize some of the keys to entering in. It’s not about figuring everything out and having every duck in a row. It really is about being free like a child. And allowing ourselves that freedom in a world of weights that seems to want to rob us of it everywhere we turn. I pray the next time those weights start bringing you down, that the Lord sends a child across your path. A child with a smile, a dance, a song, a silly gesture that reminds you of a joy that can also be yours. Then let your hair down so-to-speak. Open your mouth, let out a song; lighten your step, let out a dance. When no one is watching, when somebody is. Be free. Be you. Be young. You’ll be so glad you did.