It’s a global phenomenon, loved by children (of all ages). In the US it’s called cotton candy, In the UK, candy floss. In France, ‘barbe à papa’ (daddy’s beard). It’s a no-brainer when asking children if they want some of this sugary treat. The answer is typically loud and unanimously positive. The same holds true for ice cream, pizza, brussels sprouts (just kidding), chocolate, etc. etc. etc. Little ones are adorably transparent in their innocence, if not their insistence (think grocery shopping with Mom). Emotions are readily on full display, whether excitement, disappointment, heartbreak, or anger – and the shift from jumping up and down with glee to kicking and screaming in a tantrum on the floor is often ‘blink-of-an-eye’ fast.

For children, anything on their ‘good’ list, or anything containing the word ‘treat’ fills their hearts with eager expectation, their faces with big smiles, and their arms with knee hugs. One thing on a child’s ‘good’ list is predictability: favorites blankies, teddy bears, toys in the tub, books (what parent hasn’t wearied, possibly fallen asleep, while reading the same book 150 times?! Or been chastised for skipping a page or two in a not-sly-enough effort to abbreviate the telling?)

By the time we enter adulthood, many of the ‘good’ parts of our lives have passed into the domain of the subconscious. We no longer ‘actively’ process them. They’ve become so well integrated we can go on autopilot (I find this to be helpful 97% of the time). 

If you grew up attending church, as I did, there’s a rhythm, a feeling, that grows with you. The different elements of the service are accepted uncritically as being ‘the way it’s done.’ There’s order, predictability, a reassuring security in the sameness.

This was true for Jesus’ disciples, too. Only for them, this sameness extended over the 24 hours of Sabbath, and was accompanied by a lengthy list of regulations for proper observance. In fact, 39 very specific Sabbath laws had been drilled into them from childhood. These all shaped their Sabbath with unerring precision. But they were following Jesus now, and he had much eye-opening (disruptive?) Kingdom teaching left to do. May we allow his words to continue to shape (and reorder where necessary) our lives today, in this 21st Century. Looking forward to seeing y’all tomorrow at 10 AM, 3 PM, UK, 4 PM, FR.  PD

Share This