Banging Blocks

October 29, 2009

To have the joy of a child. To be able to throw oneself totally into the present moment. Children have that gift, that grace from God. I see it with my son all the time. He does nothing timidly. He throws himself 100% into everything.

Last fall, at our weekly music class, Kindermusik, my son and I entered the room like normal. As always, our teacher had an instrument on the floor for the children to play with as everyone arrived. My son, instantly, ran to the box, grabbed two of the sandpaper blocks and went to town. He rubbed them together, banged them together, waved them around with the exuberance of a child at Christmas. These were new and exciting instruments to explore. He did not tentatively step in and wait until he knew what to do. He jumped in—fully, totally. While he banged, wiped, and yes, occasionally threw the blocks, he danced, jumped and sang with delight as he discovered all the possibilities of his new magnificent toy. He worried nothing about the past, nor the future, but he enjoyed the present moment- the simple job of exploring sandpaper blocks.

Isn’t this what God calls us to do? Does God not beg of each of us to throw ourselves into the present moment? Does God not beg of us to forget the past and not worry about the future, but just be? I am finding myself wondering what would my life be like if I jumped into all aspects of my life with the same exuberance as my son. Would I find the same true joy that he finds? Would I find that the simple pleasures of life, such as banging sandpaper blocks or quiet moments with a cup of coffee or watching 20 birds eat hungrily from my bird feeders, are holy moments?
What would life be like if I allowed myself to enter fully into all moments of my life and not just the sporadic few that I have the courage to fully embrace? I, too, could discover the endless possibilities of my life and all of the amazing things God hopes for me to experience.

Becky is an Ignatian-trained spiritual director, retreat facilitator, and writer. She is the author of the Busy Lives and Restless Souls (March 2017, Loyola Press) and The Inner Chapel (April 2020, Loyola Press). She helps others create space to connect faith and everyday life through facilitating retreats and days of reflection, through writing, and through spiritual direction. With nearly twenty years of ministry experience within the Catholic Church, Becky seeks to help others discover God at work in the every day moments of people’s lives by utilizing St. Ignatius’ Spiritual Exercises and the many gifts that our Catholic faith and Ignatian Spirituality provide.

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1 Comment

  1. Chris

    I love this imagery — we spoke in class today about how we “enact our environment,” how we cannot truly be independent of what surrounds us. So, while I accept that what surrounds me was created, I have to accept the responsibility that I help create it on a daily basis. Very thought-provoking, Bec!

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