Spiders and cobwebs cloak the front porches lining our streets. Kids are over-extended, but vibrant with energy from trunk-or-treats, block parties, and school festivals. Mine certainly are. Six o'clock came way too early for the Gemelli household this morning. I can appreciate the fact that not everybody participates in Halloween. I get it.
But as for my family, I'm going to tell you how Harry Potter became an evangelist this week. And J.K. Rowling might drop her butter beer at the news.
Books rest in piles all over the house. My mom is visiting for the week, and before she could even plop into my office chair, she had to shove a stack onto the floor. "You need more book shelves, Meg."
But every night before bed, I take the hands of my little guys, and we travel to lands accessible only by imagination. Laws of physics need not apply. Boys and girls don invisible capes and worldly wrongs become right by their kindred bravado. Time bends and trees speak in prose. Every animated being points to a larger moral paradigm, speaking in words intended to make children giggle. Their eyes widen in wonder.
Our special routine becomes the antidote to the academic achievement my little guys practice all day long at school. As the walls come tumbling down, out come the honest questions and matter-of-fact remarks. We snuggle deeper into the oversized blanket, and then:
Mom, Voldemort was a snake and so was Satan. That must show us that they're both evil.
"Love" saved Harry, Mom. He must love Jesus too because he's really brave and nice.
Remember all the spiders in the hallways?
See that lightening bolt. That's how he knows he's protected.
Yes, kids. Every intricately woven tale hinges on the premise of good and evil, the very foundation of the gospel. So there we begin, as we crack open our devotional to finish off the night's reading.
To me, there are three main types of stories: stories that expound upon human nature, those that communicate spiritual truth, and many that mimic elements of both. There's truly nothing new under the sun, just reimagined versions of foundational storytelling.
Our children are incredible, in that, they thrive in that world. They're minds are built for it! The gift of imagination--the extending of the physical to grasp the spiritual--comes from a God who thrives on the drama of grace.
Creative thought is a requirement of faith.
When it's invisible.
When it senses but can't touch.
When it differentiates between good and evil.
When it helps us to understand what part we play in the story.
"How do I know God protects me all the time?" the youngest inquires.
All you have to do is ask Him to be with you forever, baby.
And so he did. With the help of big brother and his book nerd mama, he chose the Forever Good. An uncommon bedtime read resulted in the sprouting of a thousand pre-planted seeds of faith.
That's the power of story, God's creative genius poured out on earth to draw us near to Him.
How does your creativity influence how you relate to God? Tell us all about it below.
"For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength." 1 Cor. 1:25
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Believer. Wife. Mom. Writer. Marriage and Family Therapist. Accidental Speaker. Crossfitter and Total Book Nerd.
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