Creation from a child’s perspective

As we read Genesis chapter 1 and the beginning of chapter 2 today, we decided to take photos to help us remember what happened during the seven days of Creation. View the story from the perspective of my four- and one-year-old:

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.

Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness covered the surface of the watery depths, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the surface of the waters. Then God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light “day,” and He called the darkness “night.” Evening came, and then morning: the first day.

When it is dark in our house, we turn on the light!

Then God said, “Let there be an expanse between the waters, separating water from water.” So God made the expanse and separated the water under the expanse from the water above the expanse. And it was so. God called the expanse “sky.” Evening came, and then morning: the second day.

The sky from our front porch this morning...overcast!

Then God said, “Let the water under the sky be gathered into one place, and let the dry land appear.” And it was so. God called the dry land “earth,” and He called the gathering of the water “seas.” And God saw that it was good. Then God said, “Let the earth produce vegetation: seed-bearing plants, and fruit trees on the earth bearing fruit with seed in it, according to their kinds.” And it was so. The earth brought forth vegetation: seed-bearing plants according to their kinds and trees bearing fruit with seed in it, according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good. Evening came, and then morning: the third day.

The only living plant in the house!

Then God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the sky to separate the day from the night. They will serve as signs for festivals and for days and years. They will be lights in the expanse of the sky to provide light on the earth.” And it was so. God made the two great lights—the greater light to have dominion over the day and the lesser light to have dominion over the night—as well as the stars. God placed them in the expanse of the sky to provide light on the earth, to dominate the day and the night, and to separate light from darkness. And God saw that it was good. Evening came, and then morning: the fourth day.

Jackson's constellation globe

Our 2011 Veggie Tales calendar

Then God said, “Let the water swarm with living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the expanse of the sky.” So God created the large sea-creatures and every living creature that moves and swarms in the water, according to their kinds. [He also created] every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. So God blessed them, “Be fruitful, multiply, and fill the waters of the seas, and let the birds multiply on the earth.” Evening came, and then morning: the fifth day.

This is what we could find to represent birds and fish.

Then God said, “Let the earth produce living creatures according to their kinds: livestock, creatures that crawl, and the wildlife of the earth according to their kinds.” And it was so. So God made the wildlife of the earth according to their kinds, the livestock according to their kinds, and creatures that crawl on the ground according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good.

Jackson and Lauren act out animals being created on Day 6.

Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness. They will rule the fish of the sea, the birds of the sky, the animals, all the earth, and the creatures that crawl on the earth.”

So God created man in His own image;

He created him in the image of God;

He created them male and female.

God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful, multiply, fill the earth, and subdue it. Rule the fish of the sea, the birds of the sky, and every creature that crawl on the earth.” God also said, “Look, I have given you every seed-bearing plant on the surface of the entire earth, and every tree whose fruit contains seed. This food will be for you, for all the wildlife of the earth, for every bird of the sky, and for every creature that crawls on the earth—everything having the breath of life in it. [I have given] every green plant for food.” And it was so. God saw all that He had made, and it was very good. Evening came, and then morning: the sixth day.

It was good!

So the heavens and the earth and everything in them were completed. By the seventh day, God completed His work that He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work that He had done. God blessed the seventh day and declared it holy, for on it He rested from His work of creation.

Lauren needed some rest, so she curled up on the couch and took a nap

Firework Moments

Fireworks at the Mountain View celebration

At our first fireworks event as a family, I enjoyed the show on the ground even more than the dazzling light display in the sky.

This was the first year we brought the kids to an Independence Day celebration. We had been tentative to expose them to fireworks for fear of a meltdown, especially because our son has been so sensitive to loud noises in the past, particularly in large crowds.

Having recently moved to a new town, and being in a much smaller setting than the urban one we had come from, we decided to celebrate the Fourth of July weekend with our new neighbors and friends.

With Jackson on my husband’s lap, and Lauren on mine, we waited in anticipation as the sky grew dark and the fireworks were about to begin. The kids eyes were glued to the sky and mine were on their faces to see their first reactions.

As the first firework went off, Lauren leaned in very close as I held her tight, and I could feel her heart pounding as the lights exploded in the evening sky. The display dazzled her, and soon she was giggling and pointing up at each one of the sparkling colors. I could hear Jackson talking excitedly beside me, and Lauren began to clap with joy at the end of each round. Pretty soon, Jackson began to expect when each firework would go off, shouting “boom!” each time. Oohs and aahs from the crowd echoed around us, as I watched the lights dance in the reflection of my little girl’s eyes wide with wonder.

As the festivities continued, I sat with my husband, son and daughter on the grass, wanting to remember this first experience for us as a family.

Firework moments are like that. They are moments that should be celebrated, written about and shared. They are the snapshots that a person remembers when they look back on their life, the stories they will tell to their grandchildren.

I realize that most of life is not experienced in firework moments. In fact, I’ve heard others chide those still in the thrill of those amazing experiences, saying that real life isn’t like that and those mountaintop events shouldn’t be a focus, because life is lived in the everyday details, not the pinnacle moments.

I understand the sentiment of those types of arguments because true, lasting joy must be lived in the routine of life. However, firework moments catapult our hearts to long for something more. They open our minds to the mysteries of God’s love, and what will be in store for us someday.

Why did Mary watch on as the shepherds came to worship her precious newborn and wise men bowed before him with gifts? Scripture says she “pondered these things in her heart.” These moments were imprinted on her soul, changing and shaping her throughout her life. As she watched her son nailed to a cross, don’t you believe it was these memories and their promise that held her together when her child was being torn apart?

Firework moments should not be dismissed. They should be pondered and treasured.

Think back over your life. What are the moments, whether big or small, that you hold with you and treasure again and again in your heart?

I know for me, our night of fireworks will be one of them.

Our family after the fireworks