by Carol Brown

published in Family Matters eNewsletter, 6/19/14

If you told me that you had never been afraid of the dark, then I would think you might be lying. Working with preschoolers allows me the pure joy of seeing life through their eyes every now and then. Last Friday, we took a group of excited, energetic preschoolers on a field trip to Dauset Trails. Dauset Trails is one of my favorite places for a summer field trip… it always seems to be 10 degrees cooler at Dauset Trails! As we strolled along the shady walkways, marveled at the bears, cougars, and bald eagles, and enjoyed lunch under the trees, I loved seeing it all through the eyes of a preschooler.
 
Through the eyes of a preschooler…a sleeping black bear will get up and move if you yell at it long enough and loud enough.
 
Through the eyes of a preschooler…a rooster will want to be your friend if you chase it around the barnyard, making clucking and cock-a-doodle-do noises.
 
Through the eyes of a preschooler…every sign on every cage must be read aloud so that you’ll know the answers to all the important questions. What does this animal eat? How much does it weigh? Where does it sleep?
 
Through the eyes of a preschooler…a bus ride with friends is the perfect time for I Spy, knock-knock jokes, and giggles…and, of course, the best way to travel anywhere!
 
When I see life through the eyes of a preschooler, I look at things with more wonder, curiosity, openness, and joy. If we approached our faith in the same way, we would find ourselves more open to the delights of God’s creation, more curious about God’s plan for our lives, and more joyful in our relationships with others.
 
At Dauset Trails with our precious preschoolers, I was reminded of the joy of seeing life through the eyes of a preschooler. Where will you be reminded of the beauty of child-like faith?Most of us can’t see very well in the dark. The simple fear of being alone and bumping into something should make even the bravest among us fearful that you might walk into a wall or lose your way in night. Worse even than the fear of being alone in the dark is the fear that you are not alone, that there are unknown things out there in the dark lurking and waiting for you. Our fear of the dark moves from the rational, to the irrational, and even to the spiritual.