Nothing to Be Afraid Of


The other night, at the boys’ bedtime, it was storming. They often try to pull the typical bedtime-avoidance antics — gotta go to the bathroom, need a drink, take off my socks, need a stuffed animal, tell me a story, etc. One of those is “I’m scared,” often of nothing. But on this night Caden was scared of the storm.

He didn’t like the thunder and lightning. I explained that nothing about the thunder and lightning could hurt him. His older brother in the next room piped up, “The lightning could hit a tree.” True. School is making this one too smart. But, I pointed out, that would only hurt the tree, not Caden.

Caden wasn’t buying it.

So I told him about a story that I had heard about a little girl who every time she saw lightning flash she thought it was God taking her picture so she smiled real big and pretty. About that time lightning lit up his room, and I said — see! God just took your picture. He laughed.

You know what else I heard, I asked him. I heard about a little boy who thought that when it thundered it sounded like God was bowling, so when he heard thunder he thought about that. Again, he laughed. Laughter came also from Finn’s room.

See. Nothing to be afraid of, I said. God’s just taking your picture and going bowling.

More laughter.

I leave the room and go to my own room across the hall.

A few minutes later, there was a loud clap of thunder followed by a small voice proclaiming, “God’s going bowling!”

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