Wednesday, 6 March 2019

From the mouths of infants ...

A friend of mine told me a wonderful story. He had recently taken his granddaughter (circa 5 yrs old) to a play at a local theatre. With an audience of about 200 the play only had 2 characters - both workmen nearing retirement.

The whole play centred on their dialogue. The pair were out to do a job (repainting a playground), but it was all about their conversation - in which they recounted their life stories spent together right from childhood at school. It was clear that the pair were friends, but the exchange revealed issues and dis-chord that had been present since their school days.

Just when I was thinking 'blimey, that sounds intense, how did your 5 year old cope?' my friend explained how his granddaughter was totally engrossed in the play. One of the characters revealed that the other, Fred, had hurt him when young and that no apology had ever been forthcoming - a revelation that now flummoxed Fred after all this time.

It was at this moment of heightened tension that my friend's granddaughter suddenly stood up in the middle of the audience and called out:
Its okay Fred, its never too late to say sorry!

I'm not sure how the characters recovered and continued the play, nor whether the next line in the dialogue resonated or clashed with this outburst. But to me it demonstrated a wonderful point: that even our young children can boldly inject profound theological truth in the midst of adults.

Psalm 8 verse 2 talks of the power of infants - as adults we really should stop kidding ourselves that we have the monopoly on profound speech and understanding. In fact sometimes we need a young person to say it direct and break through the layers of cruft that adults have accumulated!

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