Driving through a school zone this morning it completely occurred to me that the parents dropping off these kids weren’t really much older than them. Not that they were the former cast of Teen Mom, but that when measured against the ever expanding back drop of eternity, the difference is immeasurable.
The distance between our oldest and our youngest is infinitesimally small compared with anything in the natural world. Do I feel more intelligent or better off when parked next to some High School-Cindy who’s ride sports an “I drive like a Cullen” decal? Of course I do. What does that even mean? Was he a race-car-driving-vampire and I missed it? Nevertheless, isn’t it more important to recognize my own ultimate immaturity?
Regardless of how much I desire to know, I’m an ant trying to fill it’s mouth with the Pacific ocean. I am a sack of intelligent water who has borrowed some calcium and carbon for a short duration so I can reflect and ponder on all that is here, and all that I am. Is there a more honest description of life than that?
And children really do know this. And we know they know it. But still, we have ‘matured’ and we have moved on to more fanciful pursuits. And we know that it’s wrong on some fundamental level, at least the most sane among us know it – and we reject them for it.
This morning, my sister said on her way out the door that she was off to battle the beasts at work today. My two year old son asked her where her sword was. “What?”
He explained that if she was going to fight bad guys at work she needed a sword and that he had one she could take. We all just stopped and looked at each other – the unbridled honesty of a child is a wonder to behold. He honestly meant it and couldn’t believe that she’d go out unarmed like that, knowing beasts were there.
She explained to him that she had one in the car, and that she’d be victorious today and he kissed her and hugged her and will inevitably ask about the battle when she returns home tonight.
Children experience life at the leading edge, as it happens. There are no filters in place to dictate how they should feel or what they should think yet – all experiences are new and fraught with possibility and fear, and the most unbelievable ecstasy.
I think anything less than living deliberately, in full pursuit of every second that the earth and the stars and our minds have to offer, is the greatest sin that can be committed. And I really wish I could stop sinning.