I hear it from my girls several times a day:
"I'm that girl!"
"You be that one - I'm the other one."
When they're watching a TV show or movie, or when I'm reading them a book, they have to claim which girl or character they are.
For example, we were watching Mary Poppins the other night when the animated carousel scene came on. "I'm the purple horse!"
Or when we were reading a book about a clown family, "I'm the girl with the red hair!"
Or when we're reading Little House on the Prairie together, "I'm Laura!" (and then a fight ensues, because doesn't EVERYONE want to be Laura?)
Or watching a new show on TV, "I'm that one! I'm Izzy!"
After they've claimed "who" they are, nothing happens. It's not that they're setting the scene for later when they reenact everything they've just watched or heard. Staking their claim on which character they are actually has no implication later on.
Sometimes I wonder what the point is. And sometimes I'm annoyed by it. (Until I remember that I did the same thing when I was little.) I know it's just a game.
And I wonder, are they basing their affections on how the character looks? How they act? What they stand for?
So then I began to think: if they're going to be thinking these things, do I want them watching this show/reading this book? I mean, would I really want them to "be" anyone on this show? Is this just a silly game and they're just pretending, or does it go deeper than that?
And then I think...
Do they look at me and think, "I'm her! I'm THAT girl!"?
I mean, I'm not wearing the sparkly pink gown, and nor do I have the flowing locks which might actually be the object of their affection. I'm not the funniest or the most entertaining or the one with the longest eyelashes. I'm not sure why they'd pick "me" to be.
But it's just a good reminder that when the show is turned off, when the storybooks are closed and when it's just me and them, I'm the focus of their attention. Am I sending them the right messages? I want them to think, "I'll be her!" And not because I'm all that. But because I'm trying my best to show them how to love Jesus and live for Jesus.
I want them to see Jesus in me and think, "I want to be like THAT."
"And you should imitate me, just as I imitate Christ."
1 Cor. 11:1 (NLT)
Lord, help me to love my kids how you love them, so that they would see you in me. Teach me how to be an example to them of living for you and loving others. Show them that no one measures up to you, no matter their fame, their beauty, their possessions or their character. Help me to live in a way that would intrigue them, so that they would want to know you more, and so that they would point at me and say, 'I want to love Jesus like THAT.'