One of the reasons I believe we are called to be fruitful and multiply is because we have a tendency to get lazy in our faith. We tend to fall beck into our comfort zone and go through the motions. We forget what it was like to be a new Christian or what it’s like to be excited and nervous about taking the sacraments for the first time. There are tons of ways that God reawakens us to our faith and passion for Christ, but the most effective way on me is through my children. Here are the ways they remind me what it means to have faith like a child.
1. My kid loves to let go of my hand and run to the Eucharist
My 2 and 3 year olds can hardly contain themselves when it’s time to go up for the Eucharist. They are dragging me by the hand trying to cut in line. They can’t wait to go up and get their blessing. I think the best part of their day is when they are actually able to get free of my grip and make a run for Jesus.
2. I love when my three-year-old reminds us to pray for dinner
This almost always happens when we go out to eat. The first time our son reminded us, “we need to pwaay,” my wife and both ended up in tears. We were so impressed with how sweet he is and how in tune he is with our faith even at 3 years old.
3. That time your kid grabs a 20 dollar bill instead of the 1 dollar bill you are holding out for the offering
The kids love running up with some money during the offering. I have to laugh at those moments when my daughter grabs a twenty out of my hand and then looks at me with an “I dare you to take it back,” look on her face. She has a big heart to give, but I think it’s time for her to bring her own wallet.
4. When your son sticks his whole arm in the holy water and I only dip the tips of fingers in there
Father Michael, the priest at our parish, is constantly telling us that we should be just as excited to stick our whole hand in the baptismal font as our kids are. Don’t worry about getting wet. Don’t worry about the mess. Remember your baptism and God’s promise to us. Remember your children’s baptism and what you promised to do. You’ll want it dumped over your head like you just won the Super Bowl every time.
5. Those times your kid is excited about going to Mass twice on holy days
What is wrong with some kids? Or better yet, what is wrong with me? Why don’t I get excited to go to Mass twice in the same day?
6. God love the child that begs to give more to homeless people
We sent our daughter to a summer camp put on by a group called Mobile Loaves & Fishes. Google them. They are an amazing group that is heavily involved in our communities and do a ton to help the needy. At the camp we sent our daughter to, she learned the how to give to the needy. Before we knew it, she was leading us to the grocery store to buy items that we could put in small bags and give out to the homeless people in our community. Not only did she want to give them every thing she could, She even wanted to TALK to them. Such a Christ-like attitude. Everyone deserves companionship and love. She reminds us of that through her actions, leaving me inspired.
7. Remember when your kid decided to bless himself in public water fountain
Oh no! What is he doing?! Why is he running over to that fountain?? Honey, stop him before strips down and dives in!!!!
Oh wait, he just wanted to bless himself… (moment of panic becomes tears of laughter and awe)
8. How bout those kids that ask to schedule a trip to confession?
You mean to tell me that kids actually WANT to tell someone their sins?? Not only does our daughter constantly ask to go to confession, she also lets me know when they are having confession at her school. You know, just in case I need to go too.
9. Then I realized they have a bigger collection of saint cards and medals than I have vinyl records
Would you rather your kid collect Justin Bieber stuff? The Saints are such wonderful examples of how to be Christ like on this earth. We can learn so much about our faith from the saints, and I can think of no one better to influence my kids.
10. My kid knows the feast days by heart
Every so often, when I get in the car with my daughter, she asks me if I know who’s feast day it is that day. I almost never know, but even if I do, I still let her tell me. Why? Because she always includes a little history lesson.
11. When you realize your kid knows most of the common prayers by memory and you still have to use an app on your phone
I don’t actually give up. I just need to step up my game.
12. Those nights the kids have to remind me to pray the rosary
Thanks for the save kiddo. No, I don’t have to pray the Rosary, but if it brings me closer to Jesus, I’m glad my kid reminded me.
13. When my kids actually sing the hymns in church
I am usually holding a small child when it’s time to sing. That’s my excuse for not holding a hymnal and uncomfortably raising my voice to God. My kids on the other hand, they will sing as if they are trying to make it onto The Voice or American Idol. Maybe God will have some singing contests when we get to heaven.
14. I asked my daughter if she would ever want to go to public school instead of Catholic school. She cried.
Our daughter LOVES her school. She doesn’t understand why anyone would ever want to go anywhere except for Catholic school. I guess it’s worth the money.
15. My kids see priests and nuns as celebrities. “He said hi to me!!!!”
My daughter knows all the priests in town and what parish they are at. She’s 9. At the end of Mass, we are not allowed to just walk out. She HAS TO stand in line and say hello to her favorite priest, Father Michael at our parish. And when a nun or sister knows her name and says hello to her, it just completely makes her year. It’s good to have role models and heroes.