seriously. let's quit laughing.
as a follow up to monday's post -- i've been thinking about how we can create more emotionally safe spaces for children in church so that their faith experience with jesus is grown and valued.
and, i think it begins when we quit laughing.
it's hard not to laugh at kids, right? they say the darndest things. and, they're just so dang cute.
it's hardest for me not to laugh during the children's sermon portion of sunday morning worship. you know how it goes. the pastor invites the children to the front and gives an itty-bitty sermon that usually includes asking the kids for a response. in earnest, the children answer the question, in the most adorable way, and i laugh. because the answer is usually unexpected, and funny, and honest.
and, it's super hardest for me not to laugh while leading a small group of preschool kids who share prayer requests about their pets, and siblings, and nowhere-to-be-found cans of playdoh.
but, it's most super hardest for me not to laugh when the children's choir sings on stage during a holiday service. all decked out in their christmas dresses and shiny easter shoes, they sing their little hearts out, trying their very best to praise god only to spot me in the audience pointing back at their cuteness, and laughing my heart out at the littlest choir boy poking his sister and yawning.
seriously. we've got to quit laughing at the children.
i want my church to be a mutually respectful community where kids can express their faith genuinely, without fear of laughter or worry about how adults will respond.
but, how? not laughing is hard. trust me. i'm the queen bee laugher.
it starts with a mindfulness, being aware, and doing our best to control or stifle our laughter at times when kids are working out their faith in our churches. let's save our laughter for other things.
in exchange for laughter, we'll show kids they are the most cherished part of our faith communities.