Battling our giants over and over again.
There's a musical and movie called "Into the Woods" that I love because of its twist on fairy tales we learn as children.
One of the major themes toward the end was "be careful what you teach your children." All of the characters at some point had to go into the woods for a journey. In the first act, they went on this journey to fulfill a wish they'd had for a long time. In the second act they went into the woods to hide from danger and then when bad things happened anyway they debated staying in the woods to hide from the future.
Once they battled their giants both figuratively and literally, they agreed to teach their children that everyone goes into the woods at some point and if they can learn from the previous generations successes and mistakes, then the journey will be more fruitful.
I've always loved fairy tales. They start with a dream or a wish your heart makes, then comes a time of learning, and then a time of happiness.
Maybe it's just the Disney magic that Tinker Bell has sprinkled on me but I see that our journey with God is no different. We dream or pray to know who we truly are. We embark on a journey of discovery that often takes us into the wilderness - just like it did for Moses, John the Baptist, and Jesus. And after we've learned a few lessons we have a time of happiness. It isn't necessarily happily ever after but a loop of the same cycle that ends in happily forever after.
As I reflect on the anniversary of September 11, I realize the urgency and deep need to remember and remind my kids that there is still evil in this world. I've tried to make the world better for them but I also need to inspire them to continue that work.
So what lessons do I need to teach my children?
Here are four things our kids need to know on this day.
- Don't worry when happily ever after ends and loops back many times. Life is not linear. You won't always be happy but you can still look for joy. Look for it daily. It's there. That process will serve you well.
- It's important to stay on the path but even more important to pick the right path to journey down. Not making a decision is in fact making a choice. If you pick the wrong path, get off quickly and find your way back. If necessary, create your own path.
- High heels are a pain in the butt for walking in the woods. A heavy back pack will weigh you down. So will metaphorical baggage. Choose your resources with wisdom and insight from those who have done this before. Some things you really don't need to learn the hard way.
- Love wins. There will be giants. There will be terrorists. There will be war. There will be disease. There will be hunger. There will be poverty. But they won't last forever. In the end, love wins. Choose the path where love is. And if you don't see one, make one. Love is the path that leads to life.
You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.
Until Everyone Hears,
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