Thursday, June 23, 2011

Dead buffalo and the life hear after

While journeying through Yellowstone today, we came across the remains of a buffalo and the tell tale evidence of a bear being nearby. I also taught my son a new word--scat. Yeah. I'm cool like that.

This actually hit my 5 year-old son somewhat hard. We had just seen (and I mean like 15-20 minutes ago) live buffalo roaming the park. And now, as we're walking a trail around a hot spring, we see the bones, fur, uneaten hooves and what-nots of a buffalo on the ground near the trail. He had a hard time trying to understand death. He felt so bad for the deceased buffalo that he almost wanted to cry.

My wife and I tried to explain to him the circle of life (which I at first called The Law of Equivalent Exchange but that might be for a Spiritual Sci-Fi Friday post). That seemed to work. And we started walking down the trail again. Then my son stopped and said "Let's pray for the buffalo" and with no prompting started "Dear God, thank you for the buffalo, please bring him back to life. I really like buffalo. Amen."

Where could I go with this? Faith like a child? This is how he is psychologically processing his new understanding of a paradigm? (yeah, I said it..paradigm... just don't pronounce it pair-a-dig 'em).

He was processing what he had heard in church and Sunday school and spoke what he heard. His idea of heaven is one of feasted upon buffalo fully alive. (For me, it'd be a an amazing southern Californian beach..maybe with a buffalo too). But he took what he had heard about death and life and applied it in the best way a five year-old could.

This was a moment of pure spiritual health at work. He was trying to take what he had learned and put it into practice. I think this is being healthy in everything we do--spiritually, emotionally and even physically (I say this as I finish up a piece of amazing peanut butter fudge from the KOA here).

Part of being healthy is not staying where you're at but allowing information you've learned from church, from spiritual mentors, from life coaches from friends and even (gasp!) parents and putting it into practice in real life situations. And seeing the results regardless of success or failure.

Wow.. I'm a bit too serious this late at night. But honestly, look for ways to have those moments where you can take what you've learned and truly apply it in your life.

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