I love stories. I love anything that tells them too, especially books.
I have realised, however, I do not love dressing up, nor making costumes. BUT, wow, don’t our kids love it! Their enthusiasm encapsulates the power of story, the ability to go to another place, be part of something more, something they love, and to immerse and learn.
It is always humbling how much we can learn from our kids.
One of my favourites, J.R.R.Tolkien, when questioned on fairy tales stated that it’s a “small wonder that spell means both a story told, and a formula of power over living men.” It was my love for this power that stories have to inspire, challenge and grow us that led me into English teaching. What a privilege to be able to teach this power of story to my students.
I believe Jesus harnessed this understanding and power of story too, this is why he always taught us in parables. The parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:30-37) that teaches us that everyone is our neighbour and we should love them, no matter what. The parable of the lost sheep (Matthew 18:12–14) that reminds us that God loves us so much that He will leave everything to come and find and be with just me. Or what about my favourite, the parable of the prodigal son, (Luke 15:11–32) that lets me know that the love of the Father is so great there is nothing I can do that will separate me from him. The list goes on… (https://www.thecharaproject.com/parables) What a privilege it is to hear and be part of these stories.
RCC has a story too that is 30 years old and growing. It is a story of the passion for the power of education for everyone. A story of sacrifice and commitment and faith to not give up doing hard things so that our kids can have an education. Not just any education though, a Christian education that seeks to create a narrative for our students that instils unshakeable foundations of identity, purpose and hope that empowers them to contribute to and make a difference in their world. What a privilege to be part of that story and stand on the shoulders of those who have gone before us.
So, what about our kids? What stories are we telling them? What stories are inspiring or inhibiting them? What stories are they part of that excite them? What stories cause them to run? What stories are hard, stretching them to grow and mature?
As a village, we must be aware of the stories our kids are a part of and be constantly encouraging them to do the hard things that enable them to ‘dress up’, to be part of stories that matter, inspire and encourage. At RCC we want our students to participate in the stories not just help them to know who they are but to find joy, hope and purpose in them.
So, even though it is not always comfortable, I need to make the time to dress up with my kids this weekend and invest in their story so it has the right kind of power…