More little wonders

Yesterday we talked about “little wonders,” how we can infuse our daily activities with the Divine just by being conscious that we’re doing the work for God. And in that way, little actions can pick up eternal significance.

Let’s play with this a little bit. I’m a mother (no, really, look at the weblog title) and there are two ways I can interact with my kids. The first is, they come with me on what I do. I bring them to the grocery store, or they join me kneading pizza dough, or they imitate me as I work on my computer (Kiddo#4 loves to bang on a keyboard) or maybe they ask me to teach them to do something I can do (as Kiddo#2 is learning to knit.)

The other way is that I can join them in their activities. I can get down on the floor and build with blocks or run a car across the floor, and in that way I’ve come to them.

It occurred to me that most of the time when we experience the Divine, or when we try to, it’s the first method. We might go to church, or pray, or read, or do some kind of consciousness-raising activity designed to bring ourselves onto a higher plane where we can meet with God. Kind of like us joining God and saying, “Teach me to knit” (or to forgive, or how to pray.)

But it’s just as valid to sit down here playing in my corner and allow God to come sit beside me and play with my building blocks, or to be with me as I fold laundry, or as I bake cookies. God doesn’t have the kind of pride that would prevent Him from getting down on our level and enjoying things with us. You could, in fact, say the Incarnation is the ultimate expression of a parent getting down on the carpet to play with the kids.

Us trying to go up to God is worship. God coming down to us is Grace. And grace comes to us of God’s own whim, its own little wonder. We just have to be aware enough that it’s happening to hand Him one of our toys and let Him join the game.


  1. Cricket

    A wrinkle, for you to smooth as you wish. I find there are two ways for the kids to join me. One way, I drag them along. It’s my trip, they’re passengers. The other way is we do it together. When he was two, my son would take one plate from the dishwasher and put it on the floor. Then he’d take a second plate, put it on the first, and hand me the stack to put away. It took me a while to figure out he was immitating and helping, rather than playing. I usually stacked all 8 on the counter before reaching up to put them away. Then there are the grocery trips. Letting them compare prices takes much longer than me just picking the brands I already know are good, but it’s better quality.

    There are times when we do God’s work, but in our own, human, way. Often, it’s even fun.

  2. Lori Poppinga

    I have one of those too. He is now 8 almost nine, but he was the most curious baby you’ve ever seen. Inquisitive is what my husband calls him.
    Thanks for your comments on the Snowflake method. I am also a character writer, but am tweaking the snowflake method to work for me. Plus, I just needed some steps I could check off. I’m task oriented and this helps me.
    Keep me posted on how your novel is coming along. I love to hear how others work.
    Have a great day.

    1. philangelus

      Lori, there’s a character-based method out there. It may be Donald Maas’s method, but I can’t recall. It’s something like, Describe your character. Describe your character’s external need or problem. Describe your character’s hidden need or problem.” and so on until you have the whole story fleshed out, but you’re going from THAT direction.

      I’ll be posting updates on the weblog, and my word count ticker will be in the sidebar. I’ll check back in at your weblog when I get a chance…