"So, regarding singing your song, the real question here is, do you want to fit into a little box with your life and your song, kind of like singing along with a "popular" song that doesn't quite fit you, but is acceptable and "nice," or do you want to risk everything to BUST LOOSE and CO-CREATE! -identifying and celebrating what is unique and extraordinary about you." - Jim Spivey
"Live a life worthy of the calling you have received." - Paul (emphasis mine)
"Train up a child in the way they should go, and when he is old, he will not depart from it." - Ancient Proverb (emphasis mine)
My youngest son Jakin has started developing his own language. It's called the Jakinian Language, or Jakinese, depending on how he feels. He loves adding words to his vocabulary, and it is slowly infiltrating how he and I communicate and interact. He has attempted many word-creations, but these 5 have stuck in our memories and have become real parts of our vocabulary.
Shaka-Baka (shah-kah-bah-kah) - "I love you."
Moshe (mow-she) - "I'm sorry."
Aka-Bakee (ah-ka-bah-key) - "See you later!"Taleequah (tah-lee-qwah) - "Could you please come here?" or "Come here." (depending on tone of voice)
And my personal favorite...
Sekasakee (see-kah-sock-ee) - "It's singin' time!" (After which it is culturally appropriate to bust out in song).
Jakin is 4, and he has yet to figure out that he is supposed to learn and behave and communicate within "what already is" and thinks that he can just go around making a unique contribution in order to "co-create what is".
I pray that God grant me the freakin' grace to never break him of this.
It is his creation, and my job is to encourage this entrepreneurial spirit in him by being a participant with him in it...and I'll tell you what, it is a joy, and it brings joy to both of us as we participate in his creation, and it has even brought joy to those who have had the privilege of overhearing us. You should see the smiles it produces out of thin air!
Maybe it seems silly, but I'm telling you what this actually does and produces - it transforms otherwise mundane, normal, regular, popular conversations and interactions between a father and son into a creative, exceptional, special, intimacy-building experience. And dog-gone it, isn't that the whole point of life anyway? That may actually be a pretty good definition for the word:
Life (lif) - a creative, exceptional, special, intimacy building experience.
The Bible says that Jesus came to give us this...and to give it to us to the full (Jn 10:10).
I must fearfully confess that I almost squelched this whole thing of his, right at the outset of his experimenting with it, as an inconvenient, childish, silly, immature waste of time with a wave of my hand and roll of my eyes. Oh God help me...how many wonderful and beautiful things have I so mindlessly destroyed with such ignorant apathy and dismissal!? So many of us grow up and "outgrow" our creativity, and I guess the creativity in others (of any age) makes us mad, or regretful, or guilty, or feel diminished...so with a wave of the hand and roll of the eyes we dismiss them.
As Jakin grows up, if I will train him in this way that he should go, his own unique way...then when he is old, he won't depart from it. He'll keep on going around thinking he is supposed to make his own unique contribution rather than fit himself into some "preconceived and proven" job or some pre-determined cookie cutter role. Rather, he will co-creating with God with ever-increasing significance and impact. And at a time when I'm about to preach a sermon about "joy to the world" during a season when people pay a tad bit more attention to actually doing so, I'm now acknowledging and mourning all that "is not" because of the boxes that all of us people think we and those around us are supposed to operate in.
Thank you, Jakin, for busting loose and allowing me to be a participant in co-creating something that is unique and extra-ordinary about you. I want to be just like you.