Today I watched a Dad once again need to build a fort around a lounge room to give his son freedom to explore, but limits so that he didn’t end up chewing on electricity or licking something with sickness on it. Oh and also to protect his sons baby friends. it was such a funny thing to watch, especially since I was playing percussion at the time, I kept giggling and playing wrong. It was like a battle. Between father and son. To see who could outsmart the other one. The son would crawl over to one side of the fort and test its strength. He would try climbing the pillow, or push the pillow, or just stick his cute face over the pillow to see what was contain in the freedom he craved. Then he would crawl over to the other side and rock the table to try find weaknesses. He pushed it, pulled it, rocked it. And then returned to the first pillow. But the second time he returned to the upturned table, the son found a hole. And quick as anything go through and started to crawl under the piano.
There seemed to be a moment in the Dads eyes like… i wonder if this new found freedom will end in tears or laughter. He looked around the room a little and decided… nope… back in the fortress. So he picked him up, smiled at his son like “good job” and put him back in the fortress and rebuilt its walls stronger.
Later on, when the son was sitting in the fathers lap they began to play this hilarious game. The boy would be facing his Dad with Dads hands behind his back and suddenly the Dad would drop the son, and then caught the son just before the floor. It freaked the kid out a little bit but then because the Dad caught him, he had instant comfort and so he would scream with laughter and settle into a giggle, waiting for the next time it would happen. The naive trust of babies and their unlearnt faith in their dads to take care of them means that even in the freak out of falling, the son was giggling still.
I wonder if God does that with us. Drops us in safety. And if we just understood his deep love for us we would respond in giggling and screamed laughter. My friend and his son are not a perfect example of God and us because there is a very low chance of the son being dropped. My friend is very safe and has very strong hands, but… the amount of times I have heard of other friends dropping their children… but with God, he will never drop us. He will never give up on us. He will never lets us hit the floor outside of his perfect love.
I think God sets up fortresses for us to teach us about his love and the extents of our own choices. I also think God gives us moments of freak out to show us how much safer his hands are than we think.