I teach four year olds at church right now. It's a bit exhausting, truth be told. I prefer working with older kids and significantly fewer snot bubbles. (Not no snot bubbles. I can be reasonable. But fewer.) I've always found babies and toddlers cute in an "I'm really glad I can hand them back to their parents" sort of way. I love working with teenagers. I tolerate working with children. It's been a bit of a challenge this time around, especially since I'm new to the area and got swept into working with kids before I really got the chance to know anyone which stinks, and I really liked the adult meetings the three weeks I was able to go to them. Sigh.
But it does come with the occasional perk, because as happy as I am that those kids aren't my full time responsibility, every so often they are so freakishly delightful or funny that I can't help but want to scoop them up and laugh at them. (Yup. At them. Man, it's such a mercy to the world that I'm not a parent right now. . .)
Yesterday was one of those days. The plan was a lesson on the Holy Ghost. I started by talking about comfort objects like blankets or people that take care of you like parents and teachers and then asked what they would do if they didn't have their blankets or teddy bears or parents around and they were feeling sad or scared or sick or needed help as a way of prepping them for the serious magic that is the Holy Ghost. "He helps you to feel happy, he helps you when you forget things, he helps you stay out of danger - He's the best! I love the Holy Ghost!" I said enthusiastically.
"So he's a nice ghost?" they asked.
"Well, he's not really a ghost like in the movies. He's a spirit. Sometimes people call him the Holy Spirit instead."
(Clearly this has not cleared up anything.)
"A spirit is someone that doesn't have a body. Isn't that cool?! The Holy Ghost doesn't have a body, so he can help everyone all at the same time!"
". . . does he have a belly?"
"No, he's a spirit. He doesn't need to eat."
". . . does he have a nose?!!"
"Nope. He doesn't have a nose, because he doesn't have a body. But remember, He can make us feel so good! - "
"- That's FREAKY!"
Freaky. Exact wording. These poor kids. I can only imagine:
"What did you learn today in Primary, Timmy?"
"THE HOLY GHOST IS SCARY, WHY DO YOU MAKE ME GO TO THAT CLASS."
And that, dear friends, is what they talked about during all of coloring time. "But how can you see if you don't have eyes?! Or walk if you don't have feet?!"
Four year old minds: blown.