That time of the day when everyone is safely tucked in bed, and I can lie down, relax, and exhale. Then, from my son’s bedroom comes a blood curdling scream, “MOMMY!” I jump up and run to his room. He is shaking and crying, trembling in fear. I just tucked him in, so he couldn’t have had time to fall asleep and have a bad dream. He wasn’t sick or hurt. The skies were perfectly calm. No wind. No storms. What was he frightened of? I asked him what was wrong. After a while he was able to squeak out, “5 suns!”
I knew exactly what he was talking about, and I shot up a quick prayer, “God, give me wisdom!” and I sat on his bed.
“Five suns. You’re talking about Odd Squad, right?”
He stopped crying, but was still upset, and said, “Yes.”
For the uninitiated, Odd Squad is a children’s program on PBS wherein child agents (all of whom have names that begin with the letter O) use math to investigate strange and odd goings on in their town. I personally think it’s a really cute show and a creative and fun way to teach math concepts. Just before going to bed, Aaron was watching an episode that had to do with things mysteriously splitting into fives. There was a picture montage, and one of them showed five suns in the sky, and that picture was very disturbing to his autistic mind. It wasn’t how things should be. It was weird. Strange, and quite unsettling. Odd.
God answered my prayer, and I suddenly knew exactly what to say. I said, “Aaron, isn’t it wonderful that when things are as God made them to be it feels right and we feel safe?” He sat up in bed and gave me his full attention. I went onto explain, “When God was doing His work of creation, after each thing He created, He looked at it and proclaimed, ‘It is good!’ God liked the way He created things, and we like it too, don’t we?” He nodded.
Then it occurred to me, “Sometimes humans try to imagine what things would be like if they were different. They try to imagine different worlds, different kinds of creatures, and whenever we do that, whatever ideas we come up with always seem strange, odd, and scary. But we can thank God that what He created is GOOD.” He decided that he wasn’t going to watch Odd Squad anymore, and then went to sleep.
Does this mean that he doesn’t read books and watch movies that have to do with alternate worlds? No. Aaron loves The Wizard of Oz and The Chronicles of Narnia. I do too. But I have to admit that when the characters are in Oz or Narnia there is a sense of uneasiness, and I finally feel good when they are back where they belong. When Dorothy wakes up from her “dream.” When Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy tumble out of the wardrobe. Things are as they should be. It would have been strange if Dorothy was trapped in Oz, or the Pevensie children in Narnia without the means to return to their homes.
As much as we like to imagine it, no one really wants to be immortal, have superpowers, or travel through time with a Time Lord in a Tardis (yes, I like watching Doctor Who). Most of us just want to live a quiet life, and to do good and enjoy the time we have on the Earth.
My greatest longing and desire is to live the best life possible, and that is accomplished by completely surrendering myself to God’s plans and purposes and seeking to live the life that He intended. That is my pursuit, and in so pursing I have experienced a very rich and fulfilling life. God’s ways are never odd. They may be challenging. He may ask of me things I don’t think I can do, but when I trust Him and step out and try, He always empowers me with His grace to see it through. God’s ways may put me at odds with the rest of the world, and often do. However, I have no regrets. The choices I’ve made have brought me here, and I am very blessed. Life is good. God’s ways are good.