Spring is a miraculous time of year during which we experience new life all around us. We understand in the depths of our souls what the Jesuit priest and poet Gerard Manley Hopkins meant when he wrote, “The world is charged with the grandeur of God.”
Spring offers the perfect opportunity to teach our children about many extraordinary ways God reveals himself to us. We see the presence of God in the blossoming flowers. We feel the presence of God in the warmth of the sun and the gentleness of the breeze. We hear the presence of God in the singing of a bird and the babbling of a brook.
Here are some ideas for how you can help your children embrace God’s grandeur in the world around you.
Look for New Life.
Be on the lookout for baby birds, baby bunnies, baby ducks, baby squirrels, puppies, kitties and new mothers walking babies in strollers. Explain to your children that all new life comes from God, and that God cares for each one of us in the same way that mothers care for their babies.
Feel the Wind.
Taking a walk on a windy day offers a great opportunity to explain to your children that we experience God in the same way that we feel the wind. We can’t see the wind, and we can’t see God, but we can feel the wind, and we can feel God’s presence in our lives. God refreshes us in the same way a breeze cools us on a warm day. God urges us forward in the same way a strong wind pushes us along. God helps us to accomplish things in the same way that the wind carries a kite into the air.
It doesn’t matter whether you plant a garden with flowers or vegetables. You can teach your children that we may be the ones to put seeds in the ground, water the seeds and pull out any weeds that sprout up, but God is the one who makes the seeds grow into plants that produce beautiful flowers or tasty vegetables. In the same way, God makes your children grow so that they can become good people who do good things with their lives.
Walk in the Rain.
What a great time to talk to your kids about God’s gift of rain! The puddles you splash through today will eventually dry up, but the water doesn’t disappear. It goes into the air in the form of vapor. When the air gets cold, the vapor forms clouds. When the clouds get too full of water, it rains. The rain creates puddles, and you’re back to the miracle of the water cycle.
Run and Play.
Don’t miss the opportunity to have fun with your children on a glorious spring day. Whether you go to a park or play in your own backyard, the chance to frolic will fill you with a sense of joy that reflects the way that God delights in us.
Springtime is God’s special gift to each one of us. It is a gift that is filled with God’s grandeur!