Year 2: August 2, 2020
Seven Blind Mice by Ed Young
(Written for ages 3-7)
Comment: “We live by faith and not by sight,” writes Paul (v.7), in the context of our hope for the future and the “new body” promised in Christ. This offers us the opportunity to acknowledge doubt and uncertainty as components of faith, as well as mutual forbearance and the concept that “Christ alone is Lord of conscience.” In Young’s book (an adaptation of a classic Indian story), the seven mice all encounter the same object (an elephant). None of them is sighted, so when they encounter different aspects of the elephant, they think they’re encountering different things. In our life of faith, we come to God from different perspectives and encounter Christ in a variety of ways. When we practice mutual forbearance, we trust that another person’s experience of God is authentic, even if it doesn’t match our own. Depending on your tradition, this may lead you to explore other denominations or even other religions. It also helps us to talk with children about how difficult the life of faith is. It’s helpful to be honest with children about our struggles in the life of faith, sharing that it’s a lifelong effort to experience God, rather than a one-time experience. Espousing this honesty throughout their lives will help to build a foundation that won’t crumble when they begin to experience doubts for themselves.
Thanks to Joshua Andrzejewski, Union Presbyterian Seminary alumnus and chaplain for the pediatric and women’s health units in the VCU Medical Center, for writing the Year 2 Narrative Lectionary Links.