Ten Things We Can Learn from Kids
Children are everywhere.
Even if no little people currently inhabit your home, you can’t go out without seeing kids in tow at church or twirling through the air at the playground or throwing tantrums at the supermarket.
Every new baby, they say, is a promise from God that the world will go on. We care for them, love them, teach them.
But what they don’t tell you is how much children can teach us.
Here are ten things I’ve learned lately from some of my favorite miniature humans.
1. Diapers aside, there are more important things than staying dry. Boot ‘em up and take ‘em out in wet weather. Their clothes will dry and so will they. They know better than we do that after the rain stops, the puddles come out. And if you’re in a prolonged rainy season, all the more reason to laugh and splash whenever you get the chance.
2. When you need to cry, go ahead, let it out. Maybe you’re hungry or mad at your family or you don’t even know why you feel like a fussbudget. Let it out. Then let it go.
3. Find a playground and a good sturdy swing. Maybe take a kid or two along. Then pump your legs. Throw your head back and let your hair hang down. Turn your face to the sky and swing high.
4. Your clothes do not always have to match. Matching is overrated. See if anyone else notices. (Trust me, they won’t.) And if you’re worried about what others might think of you, take comfort in this: They probably aren’t thinking about you at all.
5. Scoop a worm from a puddle. Reach into your pocket when the man with sad eyes holds out his sign. Take the neighbor boy hiking with you when his single mom has to work. Model compassion and practice it yourself.
6. Read a book - lots of books - to children and you will discover things you forgot or maybe never knew. Like how ants care for their fallen brothers and how baby spiders launch themselves into the world. And how people who create those Little Free Libraries are geniuses because they teach you to leave something to the world when you take something out.
(Be sure to tell people that God wrote a book too. It’s really, really good.)
7. Snacks are very important. Always pack a snack. When you’ve had a bad day and you feel like roaring like a Crankasaurus, a healthy snack will help. Or maybe one not so healthy but it works anyway. Sometimes even better.
8. Listen to grown-ups who have important things to tell you. Many of them know more than you do. Not all, but lots. This is important to remember when you are 2 ½ and 4 ½ but especially when you are 68½.
9. Be nice to people who are nice to you. And be nice to the ones who are not. A grown-up named Jesus taught us to do that.
10. If life seems to be passing too quickly, volunteer to watch a gaggle of children for a few hours or a day or even a few weeks. Miraculously, life slows right down!
Kids love sweets, and what’s sweeter than life itself?
Have another slice.
- Maggie Wallem Rowe, (c) 2021
Maggie’s new gift book Life is Sweet, Y’all, releases in March 2022 from Tyndale House Publishers.
Maggie’s first book, This Life We Share, is available in hardcover, Kindle, or on audio everywhere books are sold. If you’ve read it, please leave a brief recommendation for others here. Your input helps get the message into more hearts, hands, and minds. Thank you!