by Carolyn Kolovitz
Those of us who grew up pre-internet understand the world is much bigger than it seems online. My first glimpse into the vastness of place and possibility happened when I was small and trapped in the front seat of a pickup truck with my mom, dad and two German Shorthaired dogs as we drove from Chicago to Florida.
Boredom surpassed all known limits as I leaned my face against the window glass, staring at mile after mile of telephone wires bordering endless fields, my mind filling with the imagined characters living in the farm houses that sped by us. God could see into every house all at once, I speculated, every house in the whole world, God can see how it’s decorated and what kind of pets there are and how the people live and eat and laugh.
Then (miracle of miracles!) we were at the ocean and I was running into the sensory tsunami of salty waves and hissing white foam. My spirit burst with the contrasts of life – boredom melting into stillness, stillness melting into full attention of every sight, smell and sound, attention melting into awe and wonder for the kind of God who could create all this.
Today, I drive down the highway and see kids in backseats of cars watching videos or staring at their phones. The world outside their window rolls by without notice. The imaginary places of their minds accessed by complete boredom are not often found – and it is in that place of imagination where we meet God.
I appreciate videos and the internet as much as anyone and I believe the Creator is everywhere – but I am seldom able to notice God while staring at a screen. Are you?
As the spiritual teachers for the next generation, let’s offer young people opportunities to meet God in the stillness, in the created world and in their imaginations.
I have all kinds of ideas for how to do this – and I bet you do too. Join me for the Spiritual Grandparenting Workshop on September 22 so we can talk about how to reveal the sacred to young people in today’s world.