Brick by Brick

Describe to me what you see in this picture.

Trafalgar Square

Why, that’s Trafalgar Square in London, right?

Wrong. It’s a miniaturized representation of Trafalgar Square made entirely of LEGO bricks. Notice the “full-sized” people standing in the background.

See also: the Chrysler Building and Creepy LEGO Art.

When I was a kid, a good part of my tiny little life revolved around LEGO bricks. Brad and I would spend hours upon hours building everything imaginable. If I remember correctly, Brad’s LEGO collections were built as specified by the instructions that came with the toys. I preferred to build them by the book, take them apart, and then build whatever I wanted to in their place.

There is another LEGO memory that stands out in my memory. Once, my family was entertaining the “King’s Clown,” Lloyd Squires at our house. As usual, I retreated to my room and began to play in solitude. A few minutes later, he came around the corner, saw my LEGO brick collection and screamed, “COOOOOL! LEGOOOOS!”

We sat around and played until he had to leave. He showed me how to build underwater cameras with just a few bricks, screamed as he beheaded little LEGO men, and generally expanded my understanding of the little LEGO universe. Just an 8-year-old boy and a 40+ man sitting in a room with thousands of LEGO pieces scattered everywhere, having the time of our lives (or at least mine).

To this day I have to resist the urge when I walk by the toy aisles in Target and see something like a LEGO Star Destroyer. The stupid thing is $200, but I’m still like, “Hmmmmmmm…I bet Shari would love the Star Destroyer being the centerpiece of our breakfast table…hmmmmm…”

I guess the point I’m trying to make is that we have a tendency to suppress that little kid inside of ourselves. Watching kids play and listening to the way they interact with each other is liberating to me. They’re so uninhibited and honest; we don’t develop restrictive insecurities and the tendency to hide what we really feel until we approach adolescence.

Maybe it’s not really the LEGO bricks that I’m drawn to. Maybe it’s the openness, the energy, and the sheer joy of living that makes me want to be a child again. A rough and tumble toddler doesn’t need a Playstation; all he needs is a few stairs to climb and jump from for an hour.

Being an adult is hard. It’s less fun. It’s restrictive. It’s boring. It’s tiresome.

Understand that I’m not suggesting that all the adults of POBC gather together tonight at 6:30 and slide down a mud hill together, but there is something to be learned from the life of a child. Be honest with each other. Don’t be afraid to express yourselves. Laugh loudly. Don’t hold back your tears. Have fun. Don’t get caught up in solely expensive things. Actually live without fear of what others will think of you.

Psalm 8:2 (NIV) – From the lips of children and infants you have ordained praise because of your enemies, to silence the foe and the avenger.

Matthew 18:1-4 (NIV) – At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” He called a little child and had him stand among them. And he said: “I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. “And whoever welcomes a little child like this in my name welcomes me. But if anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a large millstone hung around his neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea.

.

Live like a child. Care like a child. Worship like a child.

Just don’t reclaim the habit of soiling yourself.

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2 thoughts on “Brick by Brick

  1. Jana says:

    And that is why I love being a PreK teacher. I got a wedding gift in the mail this weekend and was quite possibly more excited about the giant bubble wrap and giant box than the gift inside. (No, I was really thankful for the gift too!) But I immediately thought of my kids when I saw the bubble wrap.

    So….I took it to school with me this morning and we spent our “gross motor activity” time with our shoes and socks off, jumping on the giant bubble wrap. It was great fun. Tomorrow we shall crawl through the box…

  2. ryanaustindean says:

    THAT’S what I’m talking about! : )

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