This past Christmas, Piper learned what it means to have money. She got some cash for Christmas presents and immediately said, “CAN WE GO TO THE TOY SHOP!” First of all, hearing a three-year-old say “toy shop,” is about the cutest thing ever. Second, the closest thing to a “toy shop” she’s ever been in is a Target. Where did she pick up this terminology? I had no idea. However, I knew what I had to do. I had to take her to Toys R Us. That was my only option. So the next day, we decided to take her to the “toy shop” to let her spend some of that cold hard Christmas cash.
I remember going to Toys R Us as a child and standing in amazement at aisle after aisle of new toys, everything from bikes to trains to video games, the biggest toy store there is. I knew I didn’t want to grow up because if I did, I wouldn’t be a Toys R Us kid, but I digress. And, yes, I still remember the song. As a child, Toys R Us captured my sense of wonder. I mean, there was often an eight-foot-tall giraffe wandering the aisles. But when I took Piper there that day after Christmas, the anticipation, the wonder, and the excitement that five-year-old Brandon whispered in my ear all the way from the late eighties quickly gave way to reality.
I was met with an unkempt parking lot, a dimly lit entryway, and a disheveled collection of boxes and packages that said, “There is no more wonder here.” Wandering through the aisles it became more and more clear that at some point, Toys R Us lost their ability to capture the wonder of the next generation. We can blame it on Amazon, we can blame it on the internet as a whole, but the truth remains that Toys R Us had somewhere lost the ability to captivate the hearts and imaginations of their target audience, kids.
It got me thinking about my own life and how I am raising my kids. The truth is that it is my job to raise my kids with a sense of awe and wonder when it comes to God and His glory. It is my job to teach them how magnificent and beautiful He is, how glorious His plans are for their life, and how real and tangible His love can be. It is my job to capture their sense of wonder and point them toward Jesus. Don’t let the light of Jesus in your life become dim. Don’t let his presence in your life go dormant. Stay close to him, keep your own sense of wonder alive and pass it down to the next generation. The inability to capture the wonder of the next generation caused a multi-billion dollar corporation to fold. Let’s not let that happen in the Kingdom. Let’s cheer them on, build them up, and help them find a sense of wonder that establishes the type of faith that is unshakeable.