Creation Story from Godly Play Fall Lessons
I have started a new group for parents and small children ages 0-5 called Godly Play and Pray and started our journey together with this story. It is the beginning of a new year, the beginning of a new program for Children's Ministries and even a new start, with a new priest coming, for St. James as a whole community. It just seemed the appropriate story to start with. It begins with the above line and moves through the seven days of Creation. Each day is represented with a card and each time I tell it, a different card ends up being the focus for the children.
We met upstairs in our Pre-K room and it was a very small group. Small but happy and kind with each other. As I told the story I fell into the idea of "In the beginning there wasn't much of anything." When there isn't much of anything there is a place to build, to begin, to grow. I had this wonderful joy as I went through the cards placing them down carefully one by one, telling about the day belonging to each card. I knew that we were at the threshold, the beginning of something wonderful. Then we got to the third day when God gives us the gift of the light to rule the day and the lights to rule the night. We have just come out of Christmas and the children have had Holy Family stories, and the pageant with it's songs implanted in their minds. As I spoke of the moon and the stars little hands began to point to each star and say "This is the Wild Star.", "No this is the Wild Star.", and just giggle and laugh and touch hands. I had to pause and ask them to be ready so that I could tell the rest of the story, but I was stunned by their connection to the Wise Men and the Wild Star as I moved through what was The Beginning. In their hearts they recognized that time doesn't matter, it was all there from the beginning in that enormous smile that no one was there to see.
After the story was over the children all decided to work together with Godly Play materials. The desert box was brought out, the animals from Noah, the Holy family, the People of God, and the Creation cards. All were moved and put into the box, buried and dug up and the Wise Men found the Wild Star over and over. They connected the stories and made it their own and introduced new concepts to each other.
In the beginning there is hope. There is a chance to build and connect and learn. Start something new this year. If you have an idea for a ministry or a class you want to take, or an exercise program you've been meaning to start, go for it. It may not turn out the way you planned and it may start out smaller than you hoped, but it's a beginning and a beginning is a chance to grow.
Peace be with you.