by Caryl Moll
I’m not one for serious poetry, but there are a few simple, children’s poems that sit very deeply with me.
Some years back, I came across a poem from a children’s book – “WILD CHILD”, by Jeanne Willis. Although I’ve not read the book, I’ve read all its reviews. They are all encouraging. Apparently “Wild Child” is a fictional, children’s story of a spirited, curious, fearless and free child – the last child in a dramatic landscape where anything can happen. The imagery of the poem and the overview of the book transports me straight back to my own childhood – my idyllic Eden – a rural setting where I remember feeling totally free to explore God’s creation – unhindered from the demands of the large, wider world.
It brings me to the point of this blogpost…
We are all different, made uniquely by God within His overall blueprint. Scripture tells us that we have been ‘knit together in our mother’s womb’. (Ps 139) I believe that it’s our individual characteristics – talents and gifts that God has given us – that make us stand out and thrive. It is these gifts that cause our ‘light to shine’ and make a difference to our world.
As parents, our prime responsibility is to nurture our children. We are tasked with disciplining them but ultimately to encourage them in the way we’d have them go. Most of all, however, we are to help them unravel their own unique personalities and give them space to be themselves.
I am always saddened when I come across people who have been shaped into a vision of what the world expects of them. Somehow, their own uniqueness is shadowed by false social norms. They shy away from sharing their unique self (Admittedly, we all have a bit of this in us – it’s called ‘culturalisation’). But how many of us are carrying a big mask that covers up our real selves. Why are we hiding?
Over the past year, during lockdown, I have explored this process for myself. I’ve tried to embrace my own unique gifts and talents. This mainly involves my creative side – painting, drawing, writing, crocheting, etc. The question, uppermost in my mind, however, has been…”How can incorporate these gifts into a process of encouraging others?” It’s been an incredibly enlightening period as I’ve used what I have – including social media to try and touch others. I’ve discovered ‘Bible journaling’ too – a more creative way of spending my quiet-times. Quite simply, this has been an wonderful time of self-discovery and reaching out. Some of my talents have been unleashed and I am ‘delighting’ in the process.
So, I’d like to encourage you today, dear reader, to look for your own ‘wild child’ again. It’s time to share your real self. It’s time to unleash what God has gifted you. It’s time to really SHINE FOR GOD – to be the ‘Wild Child’ you were meant to be!
Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.
With love, in Christ