My own preschool-aged kiddo says some pretty funny things sometimes. My husband’s favorite is when he laughingly bursts into our conversations with “Dad, you’re so funny!” But he’s still a newly-minted preschooler, fresh off the toddler train. For those truly priceless gems of childhood wisdom, I can look to our group of slightly older preschool friends we get to spend a couple of hours with every week.
If you’ve interacted with this age group, you know emotions run from 0 to 60 and back to 0 in seconds, and one particularly nerve-hitting topic is sharing. The scenario: a lovely little dinosaur was left on the table by Girl while she played with another toy. Boy comes by on his way to the kitchen area and took dino with him. Upon realizing the dinosaur is gone, Girl burst into hysterics. I of course tried do the reasonable thing and started to reason with an almost-4-year-old who wanted a toy back. The ensuing conversation went something like this:
Girl: He took My TOY! (sobs throughout conversation)
Me: Girl, it’s OK. We just have to go over to Boy and ask for the dinosaur back.
Girl: He took it and I. Want. It. Back.
Me: Girl, let’s go over to Boy and ask for the dinosaur back. You don’t have to cry.
Girl: But I was playing with it!
(notice how it seems like we had separate conversations…)
Me: Girl, you don’t have to cry. See, Boy brought it back. Why were you crying?
Girl: (straight-faced, no tears) Well, I cry when I want something because it works.
Do we adults, maybe with a subconscious reflex when we don’t have our way, have our own immature reactions for the very same reason? We try to couch our “tantrums” with these explanations and trace issues back to this influence, that event, but what’s really at the heart of it? Is it really because we know it’s the quickest way to get what we want?
Thankfully, God loves each of us the way only He can:
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails.
1 Corinthians 13:4-8