Friday, November 7, 2008

Our friend Kim Kirk emailed us this poem the today:

Sylvan's Request
"Will you color with me?" asked Sylvan.
"Not right now, I'm going to do go do... something important."
I went to do something I needed to do, didn't I? Oh no.
What a glorious invitation I passed on today.
I could have colored!I never color anymore.
I saw I wasn't good at coloring, so I stopped.
Growing up is dangerous like that.
It's so easy to forget that playing isn't competing,
So easy to confuse the serious with the important or the skillful with the valuable.
Sylvan wanted to color while Leo played in a cardboard box
And Violette carefully balanced a pillow on her head.
How silly they are.
How wonderfully, worshipfully, beautifully silly!
But me?Well, I had to do something important.
--Nathan Bubna

There's a lot of Truth in this poem, and it's not just the squishy, nostalgic, feel-good cause I played with my kid "truth". God has been impressing this particular Truth on my heart lately.

You see, I often forsake "coloring" for "something important" as the author suggests, and not just in regard to my child. My "something important" is usually writing a song, reading a book on theology, or playing music. The crazy thing is that I hold these things "important" for their spiritual value. This poem helps remind me that the most spiritual acts in our lives are often some of the most mundane.

According to the Bible, God is love. Think about that: God = Love. So the most spiritual endeavor I can pursue is not a song, music, or reading about spirituality. Rather, it is an act of love. The most pure act of love is one of service for another person, especially an act that causes me to limit myself for the sake of that person (i.e. coloring with a child is so below my skill level, and yet in doing so I limit own abilities for the sake of the child. Sometimes, I even color outside the lines to make them feel better about coloring outside the lines!).

Jesus said "the greatest among you shall be the servant of all." How much more did Jesus limit himself to take on flesh, serve mankind, and then unjustly die for the sake of his love for us!

What is your "something important"? Who do you need to "color" with? Let us forsake ourselves and our own agendas for the sake of love.

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