Thursday, August 14, 2008

We're All 5 Year Olds

Pardon me while I get all deep and theological for a moment. See, I have a long-standing theory that in God's eyes, we are all 5 year olds. That's the basic idea behind my short story Job At Five, from The Desert.

I've recently added to that theory: when we get to Heaven, we'll still be 5 years old.

Here's what I'm thinking: healthy five year old kids are remarkably unselfconscious, full of energy and have a breathtaking capacity for joyful play. They are comfortable with the phrase "I don't know," and are constantly learning. They ask wonderful questions, are amazingly creative and live in a fascinating world full of new discoveries. They are also just the perfect size for cuddling. Isn't that what Heaven is supposed to be like? Learning, loving, sharing, etc?

Yeah, I know the Bible says we'll judge angels, as if I have any idea at all what that would involve (it's in 1Cor 6:3 if you're interested). But the book of Isaiah says "a little child will lead them," and Jesus Himself said we're supposed to come to Him as a child.

What if he meant it, this whole child thing? Yeah, I'm pretty sure Heaven is full of 5 year olds...

[FOLLOW-UP: Turns out this is neither a new idea nor an original one for me. I was flipping through Brennan Manning's The Ragamuffin Gospel just now, and found the line "Heaven will be filled with five-year-olds." I read the book several years ago, and that concept must have lodged in my brain then, to emerge again recently. Manning also writes "Children are our model because they have no claim on heaven. If they are close to God, it is because they are incompetent, not because they are innocent. If they receive anything, it can only be as a gift." I love that line!]

1 comment:

Kate Lord Brown said...

Hi Dan - will put my Amazon order in. For the bedraggled beat up and burnt out - sounds perfect. Five is a great age.