Generation after generation stands in awe of your work;
each one tells stories of your mighty acts.
Your beauty and splendor have everyone talking;
I compose songs on your wonders.
Psalm 145:4-5 (MSG)
It all started about 5 years ago, when the oldest of my grandchildren announced she had read a book, “Wonder”. Since that time, I received the sequel, “Auggie, and Me” as a Christmas gift from another grandchild and then saw the movie. When I asked a younger grandchild what was the best part of the movie, she said “It was“when Auggie made his first friend at school”, These series of events with grandchildren has lead me to think more about how we see each other. What is most important? What binds us together? Is it about our abilities and competencies?
There are many modern voices, Hans Reinders, Jean Vanier, Stanley Hauerwas, and John Swinton, that have addressed and worked to answer these existential questions. Another experience just published was from a parent’s perspective -“I am that Parent”. This is worth a careful read.
For me, this is a question of being a grandparent and the creation of spaces where we learn and live together; like reading books together. And maybe an answer is found in the “wonder/mystery” of how we live into the reality of our limited abilities and understanding. “Friendship” looks like a good place to begin as my grandchild understands.
Palacio, R. J. (2012). Wonder (1 ed.). Knopf Books for Young Readers
Palacio, R. J. (2015). Auggie & Me: Three Wonder Stories (7th ed.). Knopf Books for Young Readers.
Rule, A., I am that parent.
JAMA. 2018;319(5):445. doi:10.1001/jama.2017.21048
Hage, M. L. (2012). Awaiting “Good News”