Why Artists Belong in the Church Nursery
Image: Gatanass / Flickr

I should probably confess my bias at the outset: I love kids.

As a kid, I loved babies. In middle school, I told my mother that I couldn't wait to be a dad. My sisters and I vowed with no small amount of chutzpah over against Providence that we would each produce four children. (This, in part, was a way to address the certainty that the Almighty had unjustly dealt us only one first cousin. Our children would not suffer the same fate.)

My plan was to get married in my early 20s, then to start having babies by 25, which, I thought, was a perfect age to bring little people into the world. As it turned out, I married just shy of 36 and by God's grace I saw my first baby at 39.

While I wait for God to give us more children, I take pleasure in the children God has already given me and my sisters' children, four of Christine's, two of Stephanie's, whom I have thoroughly enjoyed 15 years now. I also enjoy pretty much anybody else's kids, which is why I had the time of my life during my first stint of service in our church nursery.

As I mentioned to some friends afterward, while half the 1 and 2-year-olds regarded my beard warily, the other half used plastic farm and kitchen utensils to comb it. I'm not exactly sure why that made me so happy, but it did; it was kids being kids and my beard being put to good use.

All morning long, I repeated, "It's ok, it's ok" (to soothe frayed little people nerves); "Please be gentle" (to encourage less semi-savage behavior as some of the more enthusiastic kids made a grab for another child's toy); and "Excellent tea!" (as we celebrated our never-ending tea party).

One of my favorite parts was leading the children ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.

July/August
Subscribe to CT and get one year free.
Read These Next
Current IssueThou Shalt Have a Good Time
Thou Shalt Have a Good Time Subscriber Access Only
Enjoying yourself is a spiritual discipline.
RecommendedDo Children Go to Heaven When They Die?
Do Children Go to Heaven When They Die?Subscriber Access Only
God's love for children is clear in Scripture, but the 'age of accountability' is harder to find.
TrendingKay Warren: 'We Were in Marital Hell'
Kay Warren: 'We Were in Marital Hell'
Through God's work in our lives, we've beaten the odds that divorce would be the outcome of our ill-advised union.
Editor's PickFinding My ‘True Self’ As a Same-Sex Attracted Woman
Finding My ‘True Self’ As a Same-Sex Attracted Woman
In my young-adult struggle with sexual identity, both legalistic condemnation and progressive license left me floundering.
Christianity Today
Why Artists Belong in the Church Nursery
hide thisAccess The Archives

In the Archives

December 2013

To continue reading, subscribe now for full print and digital access.