Here is a short post that highlights what I see as a prime lesson from our grandchildren.
Here’s the situation. Beks is seven, full of enthusiasm and love for rainbows, unicorns, puppy dogs and all things beautiful and whimsical. David is eight and a half, and he is the practical, analytical, “things are supposed to make sense” big brother.
Yet, both children have great compassion and they have been taught from Day One to accept and tolerate and encourage. Then this happened, a couple of days ago. Their mother – our daughter Naomi – recorded the exchange; here’s the transcript:
Beks: Did you know that the weather man is often wrong, so I think it’s going to downpour and do you know what would be AMAZING?? If there was a beautiful unicorn that came down from the—
David: Sorry but it’s not possible.
Beks: STOP IT – UNICORNS ARE REAL! MS. EMILY SHOWED ME PROOF AND MOMMY SAYS THAT THEY LIVE IN A REMOTE AREA OF NORTHERN ASIA… AND ALSO IN EUROPE, AND IF WE FIND ONE AFTER IT JUMPS FROM THE CLOUD IT WILL SLEEP IN MY ROOM: AND YOU WILL WISH YOU HAD A UNICORN TOO!!
David: Okay okay! Geeze! I was just saying it would definitely be very surprising if it came down from the cloud! If you can catch one I think that would be very…uh… neat.
Naomi (mom): 🙄🙄🙄
So why is this worth passing on? Well, both grandchildren have diametrically opposite views of the world, how it works, and what is real. But they are listening to one another. They are trying really hard not to judge, and they are both open to points of view they don’t easily understand.
This really is remarkable when it comes to siblings! So why not – as grown adults – adopt the same attitude when it comes to politics, religion, social issues etc?
Why not just choose to love one another and to listen?
Listen to the children.
Derek has published seven books in the past decade (you can find them at https://www.amazon.com/Derek-Maul/e/B001JS9WC4), and there’s always something new in the works.
Before becoming a full-time writer, Derek taught public school in Florida for eighteen years, including cutting-edge work with autistic children. He holds bachelor’s degrees in psychology and education from Stetson University and the University of West Florida.
Derek is active in teaching at his church: adult Sunday school, and a men’s Bible study/spiritual formation group. He enjoys the outdoors, traveling, photography, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and golf.