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Viewpoint from Carolyn Cliff 19/10/2018

Reader, Parish of Great Yarmouth


as published in the Yarmouth Mercury


I recently had a wonderful weekend retreat where we had four sessions of Godly Play.  Godly Play started in the USA and has been used in this country for over 10 years.  It tells the Bible stories with simple props, has a ‘wondering’ session, and then you have a while to reflect on God, ‘work’ or ‘play’ using craft materials, write, use the props yourself, or even just sit and be quiet thinking what the story means to you and your life.  Allowing you time and space to hear God
dove leftGodly Play was originally used with children in church but has spread to be used in schools, care homes, those with dementia, or even with just a group of adults.  I found the weekend inspiring and that somehow Jesus had touched me with his love and left me with joy bubbling inside
So many of us have demands on our time.  What with work, caring for our families, shopping and housework, worries about health, finance, and a loved one; that we forget a time to pause.  That time to stop and ask the big questions about who we are? Why God has created us? Where are we going?
Jesus said that “Unless you are like a little child you cannot enter the Kingdom of Heaven”.  Yet, as we grow up and life’s responsibilities come piling on us, we push the child in us and in others away.  We lose contact with what it is to be a child, to think like a child, to be inquisitive and explore the world around us.  We may even forget to have just that plain good old-fashioned fun and laughter with the simple things in life
Dove right 
In the Sound of Music, Maria sings “These are a few of my favourite things”.  I may be nearly old enough to be a great grandmother  (oh, that’s scary!), but the child in me just occasionally escapes.  Well some of my favourite things let the child in me out are:

rainbows and bubbles floating on high
scrunching through piles of dry leaves I can’t quantify
jumping in puddles, wellies or no

These are a few of my favourite things
I wonder what would let you get in touch with the child within you? Maybe you will find Jesus bringing you into the Kingdom of Heaven


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