I was in a bus this morning to work after waking up a bit late. If you live in Lucky Summer (yes. Lucky), then you know the ‘government’ closed one of our big roads recently. The one that connects Dawanol to Outering road. Ati in the name of construction. It’s now going to two months. So when you board a matatu after 6.00am, then you should be ready for traffic that starts at your doorstep. Before you meet the mother of all traffics at Alsops along Thika Road.
So that was me this morning. In a bus at 6.30am wondering why I don’t have wings. Or maybe I had, but God plucked them in my sleep to make Kavila Nyaa (she’s never late in traffic- she probably flies). But I wasn’t alone. Everyone else around me seemed quite anxious about the next 40 minutes or so. They were probably thinking like me, of the assignments they had, and if they’d still finish them in time. So we were all very quiet. No phone calls, or petty talk. Not even the irritating Main Kageni.
But there was a small group of kids standing along the aisle (their parents either let them go to school alone, or don’t see the need to lap-hold them if they accompany them). Happy little souls. “Mark, which animal do you like? Me I like lion”. One of them started. “I love leopards. If I wasn’t human, I would be a leopard!” the conversation had started. They kept going, allocating to themselves what my ‘realistic grown up mind’ thinks is stupid. But I found myself enjoy just listening to them. Listening to their untampered hope and faith. Here was a small group of 9year olds who believed that it was so easy for them to be a lion, elephant or Leopard, when most of us grown ups don’t think we can get that job or promotion. We have allowed life to deal us so harshly that we no longer believe, trust or hope for a better day. In fact, we don’t even think there are better days. We just see them as the same – days. We get so obsessed with life’s priorities like job assignments, family demands, money problems and so on, that we forget to LIVE.
But we must understand why Jesus loved children and said that his Kingdom was for such as they. Not because they are young and clueless, but because they have unshakable faith. They believe in themselves, and in others. They KNOW they can be anything they set out to be. They carry in them a virgin form of happiness, which grown ups see as stupidity. This is why they can stand in bus to town (while everyone else is seated) and chat all the way without caring that they are disrupting the grown ups (who are busy dying inside) .
My friends, go back to being that child you once were. As Paulo Coelho would have it, she may be suffocated or malnourished over the years, but she’s definitely somewhere in there. Go in and look for him or her.
And when you find them, BECOME them again.