Friday, March 02, 2007

Onions and Old Coffee

Last night at Pioneer Clubs, Mrs. P demonstrated to our four- and five-year-old boys that you can be aware of the presence of something even if you can't see it. One of the ways she did this was to blindfold them and have them smell certain odiferous items and guess what they were. One enthusiastic young lad asserted that he had "a nose like a bloodhound." He revised his comment later when he was unable to guess any of items while one of his friends guessed very well. Another little boy, clearly impressed by the simile regardless of its truth, kept saying at random, "He has a nose like a bloodhound!"

This was my first experience helping at Pioneer Clubs. There was a time when kids were the people I knew best. They were the ones I wanted to tell about Jesus. I worked at a daycamp for five summers during high school and college. I taught Sunday school in London. I tried to start a kid's club. I hung out with the children of my refugee friends. I had this lifelong idea that it would be great to work in an orphanage in Morocco or somewhere.

Then I moved back to the States and I was tired, and I said, "I'm done. No more of this taking care of other people's kids." There wasn't a really good reason for this. It was just how I felt at the time.

In our church, we have a children's sermon during the earlier of the two Sunday morning services. The children stampede to the front of the church so they can hear and see what's going on better. After they've left their seats, the church looks about half as full as it was to begin with. That's how many children attend our church. Recently it's been dawning on me that I don't really know any of these kids. And that I am the one being impoverished by this state of affairs. So even though I can't make it every week, I have decided to help out with Pioneer Clubs. If I even get to know five children, it will be better than my record of late.

9 comments:

Mark Goodyear said...

What a wonderful goal--to get to know at least five kids in your church well. As someone with two small kids, that would mean a tremendous amount to me to have people like you in our church.

Also, and this is a tangent, the kid who was "clearly impressed by the simile regardless of its truth" is about like the rest of us who get caught up in media spin. Something sounds so good, we just can't let it go!

Jenn said...

I like getting your perspective on my musings and rantings, Mark. I never thought, for example, what it would mean for parents to have other adults try to get to know their kids.

I definitely agree with you on the media-spin thing, too!

Jenn said...

I like getting your perspective on my musings and rantings, Mark. I never thought, for example, what it would mean for parents to have other adults try to get to know their kids.

I definitely agree with you on the media-spin thing, too!

Craver VII said...

Oooh, two Jenns! Which one is the evil twin?

Teaching kids is such a neat thing! Personally, I gravitate to the 3rd thru 5th graders, while Mrs. Craver’s specialty is preschool. And each age group requires its own special gifts.

Annelise said...

The "grown-ups" who weren't my parents at Barrington Baptist who influenced my spiritual growth and calling were significant. At a time when kids' parents know nothing (from the kids' perspective), the involvement of other godly adults is really important. So this is a great idea, Jenn!

Jenn said...

Ooh, creepy. I'm not really sure how that happened. I'd try to delete one of the Jenn-comments, but then yours wouldn't make any sense, Craver.

Maybe I should change my blog name to Nwith2Jenns?

AnnaMaria said...

Hello!
I found your blog from "Israel Outlook".
I've always thought the easiest to like were: little kiddies, animals, and old folks:):)
Hope to come visit a pretty coffe shop of *yours* someday:)

Jenn said...

Hi Annamaria! Welcome! Thanks for visiting.

I'd be up for a coffee shop of *mine* someday, too, but not at this juncture, I guess. Oh well, one can dream . . .

Stacey said...

What a wonderful thing that you are back into child investment :) I find they truly are the best source of inspiration, joy and anecdotes. I do pray the Lord gives me an opportunity to start working with some children again too.

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