The blustery wind is whipping the slightest of cloud puffs as billowy sails across cornflower skies today, and like an unseen hand is pushing, whooshing me from the back, nearly knocking me off me feet, till I almost feel like I could dip my head and take off flying! The image of an old TV character who used to do just that skitters across my mind and makes me laugh.
This blow me down breeze nearly crashes my resisting car door back upon my legs as I rush to tuck myself and my drawing pad bundles back inside, sends my hair flying around my face, whistles and roars about the world outside like Alice’s Mad Hatter.
And somehow, this mighty, house-creaking, wildly musical chime playing, tree branch scuttling wind is reminding me of the power and call of imagination…of daydreaming… and how God’s design for Sabbath rest (really daily, rejuvenating rest) needs to root not only within our spirits, but bring us back to what He instills in us as children…for joyful, creative, revitalizing purpose.
But… I wonder…
Do our children even have time for daydreaming these days? Is it something they even wish for anymore? Or are they so ever spinning on social media and technology and running from one activity to another that they have replaced the joy of quieting the heart, listening for whispers to the soul with texting and LOL acronyms?
If so, what will happen to all the inventions and inspiration and creative revelations God is waiting to endow into them, into our world?
This is a question I’ve been pondering these last few weeks as I’ve been thinking out this post idea…originally sparked within me as I drew the sketch above, a boy and his dog looking as though they are ensconced in time to daydream… (I love this image 🙂 )
Then…On Saturday, I came upon a classic movie about Edison the Man… and having been years since I’d watched, decided to take time to enjoy. The film portrays the inventor as ever listening for creative sparks, always pondering and thinking what if? For literal years he is trying every which way to invent the light bulb, and when he finally does, sets up an experiment (at his own expense) of lighting an entire street for the first time without gaslight. I imagined – What a wonder that must have been the first time people saw electric light set a night street aglow in one flash! Discovery after discovery, long years of hard work trying and experimenting…yet, it all seemed to begin on the flame of a daydream.
Oh, I think today — let us not lose that gift!
Spencer Tracy as the elderly Edison at the end of this 1930’s movie delivered a speech that nearly blew me over, like the wind today… and I wondered if it came completely from an actual one given by the aging scientist. In it he was warning of science losing touch with the God who has endowed us with creating after His own heart, the One who holds all the mysteries and reveals them to those who will hear… as though we are standing on a precipice and losing sight of Him… Such amazing, still relevant, echoing words immortalized in this film, incredulous to me, from almost 100 years ago…
Later, I hear someone talking of George Washington Carver asking God for witty ideas and how the Lord revealed to him hundreds of wondrous gifts of the simple peanut — revelation that transformed our world… came only out of quieting the soul and…listening...
Like the Mad Hatter, are we rushing hither thither… its late, its late, no time to watch and wait? In thought, I see the image of young ones I know who are antsy when opening credits to a movie are rolling, and ever wanting to speed the DVD to get right into the story. I have always loved the slowing down of mind and spirit and letting such musical credits bring me into the play, so bemoan this loss among these now. No time to relax, to just be.
Are we teaching our children to live that way, encouraging them to stifle and bury the daydreaming God intends, I wonder?
In the time of growing up before cell phones… when Max Smart’s shoe phone only made us laugh hilariously at it’s utter “impossibility” (ahem!)… and Internet and all it’s accompanying technology was but someone’s daydream on the horizon… I never really thought of my life as particularly bucolic, free as a Disney Fantasia. There was always endless reams of homework or chores demanding attention and it seemed to me that I had to purpose to find time to just let my mind soar in creative ways… We never roamed totally free as children, the free-sounding way my mom described her own childhood…
Yet, somehow I managed to spend hours upon weekend hours ensconced with pillow and a good book… entered into that make believe world where I could let my mind and heart and spirit fly…
How much more we have to carve it out in our hectic world today!
Now… above the blowing, I hear a soft voice beckon with Lenten heart. “Won’t you join me in a daydream or two?”
“Not just for you…” He says. “But to restore that jewel to My littlest ones too…”
© Pam Depoyan
“Two on a Daydream,” the boy and his dog portrait above: mine. (Please do not copy without permission. See my copyright info button on the sidebar. ) Available in my All Things Childhood gallery at Picture it in Pen and Ink…