My 7 year old nephew, Ben, is staying with me for the week. This evening, we were driving to Monkey Joe’s playhouse and we had the following spontaneous conversation. (I’m so grateful that I carry a small notebook with me so I can record moments like this.)
B: Meeda, do people in Russia and China and Africa and Japan care about Jesus?
M: (suppressing a giggle): Yes, they do. And other people there and in the rest of the world care about Mohammed, Buddha, Krishna, Vishnu and so on. There are lots of different names for God, did you know that?
B: Oh wow! I didn’t. Even Yo-Ho-Va or Ya-ya-may?
M: Um, you mean Jehovah and Yahweh?
B: Yeah. Can you pray to them?
M: Yes. You can pray to any of them as long as you know you’re praying to a higher power that you feel a strong connection to.
B: Well, if I could name God I would name him “Wow Man!” Ha ha! I would you know why?
M: Wow Man?! I love it! Why that name?
B: I would say “Wow Man! You made all of this! You’re awesome!”
M: (suppressing tears) That’s beautiful Ben!
B: Yeah. I would pray to Wow Man and say “Wow Man, thanks. You made all of the nature. Everything that is beautiful in this world. And you made even the aliens, real or not real (because we don’t know just yet). And you made the streetlights and guns and arrows and bullets and lasers.” And he made you and me, Meeda. Well, he is you and me, Meeda. Did you know that?
M: (goosebumps, swelling of the heart and tears in my eyes) I do now, Ben. Thanks. That’s so beautiful.
B: Yeah. It is. And did you know that all the clouds are are the face of God? And the tornadoes are his feet? Are we going to have a tornado, Meeda? Are we?
M: No, Ben. What you are saying though is so beautiful and it makes me really happy. I’m glad you’re telling me all of this.
B: Well, thanks. And do you think God’s sister would like hearing all of this?
M: (dumbfounded but really amused, excited and convinced that God has a Divine Sister): I think she would. I like that God has a sister.
B: Well, yeah. God has a big family. Who do you think looks after them all? His sister. And you know how some sisters can be bothersome, Meeda?
M: (laughing): She’s not bothersome, is she?
B: No! She’s really, really nice!
M: (pulling into the parking lot) That’s good to know.
B: Yeah!!!!! Monkey Joes! Monkey Joes! Hey Meeda? Do you think kids can be astronauts?
B: I am going to jump so high here that I will go to outer space. Well, once I jumped so high I broke my back, but I’m Ok now. Can I get some cotton candy? How long are we going to stay here? Did you say I can get some cotton candy?
M: Wow. Man.