This past year, I taught the youngest age group I have ever taught. 8 year olds. If you had told me I’d be teaching this age group some years ago I would have rolled my eyes and replied “Yeah right!” But you know, life has a way of taking you where you need to be.
This year has been my favourite year of teaching ever and I know it has to do a lot with this class.
One of the biggest lessons I’ve learnt from these kids to how to “love like a child”.
We all start off this way, innocent, forgiving, trusting, open. But as we get older life robs us of this ability to love openly. We get hurt so we become guarded, our honesty is taken for granted and it makes more sense to protect ourselves than to go all in. What a way to live.
A child’s love is characterised by truth. I love how open and honest my students were with their friends, sometimes the honesty was painful but it always stemmed from a place of love which was beautiful to see. “You are my friend, but you were being mean and that’s not nice” So cute. Even to me, “Ms Sabirah, um you were a bit unfair”. And then the compliments? Never ending. Children are really amazing.
I also noticed was how quick they were to forgive, I’d still be bristling over another person’s offence and they’d be over it and playing with them by break time. Even when I spent the afternoon punishing them, they came back the next day with hugs. How nice would it be to be able to let go of things so easily?
They were also so practical about how they loved, constantly giving- with words, with actions. It’s like they couldn’t express it enough. If they weren’t writing letters or making cards, they were giving hugs and being sensitive to moods. There’s never any doubt about how children feel about you. When they love you, they love all in. It’s really how love should be. Love is a practice.
Now I’m not saying children are perfect little balls of innocence. They can be mean, bratty and downright annoying, but that’s not what this post is about. It’s about how they Love
I’m constantly reviewing my life, am I living the life I desire, am I practicing the things I preach? Am I living a life that Jesus would be proud of? I want to live my life intentionally (peep the bio), I want to love wholeheartedly. Over and over. So this is a reminder for me, and for you.
Love like a child