Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Rainbow Offerings

I co-teach a small class on Wednesday nights. In fact, it’s very small. Most of the time there are only two or three students, maybe two preschoolers and one elementary student. Last week it was just me and the two preschoolers, M & T. Our lesson was on Creation, laying a foundation for our next class when we would be making pinewood derby racers. I had prepared several items to let them think about human creation to better understand God’s creation:

We played with a traffic cone, making it a nose, an ice cream cone, a hat, a chicken.

We watched a clip from The Ellen DeGeneres Show of kids who had invented things.

I gave them a blank paper that said “I’d create...” and they were supposed to draw something they would like to create.

At this point T stepped out to get a tissue from the bathroom, and when she returned she saw her sister had (accidentally) scribbled a little on her paper. You could see the disgust in her eyes; her paper was tainted, and she would not accept it. So I presented her with her options: her original paper with her sister's small scribble, another paper that had been slightly crumpled, or my paper on which I had already drawn three lines to begin a rainbow. She chose my paper.

When she finished, I asked her what she drew and wrote down her response. Her paper now said, "I'd create... a rainbow for you." She took back her paper, looked at it curiously and asked, “Is that how you spell your name?”

It suddenly dawned on me; she was not drawing a rainbow for some generic, unknown "you." She was drawing a rainbow for me. Her teacher. Amie.

I now saw before me the most beautiful rainbow that ever existed. She appreciated what I gave her so much that she wanted to give it back to me.  Maybe this is why Christ told His disciples, "unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven" (Matthew 18:3).

There seems no better time than Ash Wednesday to reflect on the meaning and value of our offerings. While many believers are looking to give up material comforts as worship to God, I'm thinking about what I can create. I pray that during this Lenten season, my rainbow offering will make God smile.

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