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Be the adult who notices kids. Most don't.

Membership Level Starter

Author/Source: Karl Bastian

Topic: Kidology Theorem #11

Kidology Theorem #11 - When kids you've never met smile and wave at you, you might believe you have a superpower. Maybe you do!


You Just Might Have a Superpower!

There was a time when I thought I had a strange superpower. It was no surprise to me at church that kids would wave to me from across the room or run to greet me. I am their pastor, after all. I’m greeted with smiles, waves, high-fives, and even hugs any time I am around the kids I minister to. They love me because they know that I love them too. But I started to notice that often I got similar reactions from kids when I was completely out of my familiar ministry context. I could be out at a mall, a county fair, or even out of state sitting in an airport and kids would wave at me and send me a big smile – and often from great distances. There were times when I would turn and look behind me thinking certainly, they weren’t looking at me? There must be someone behind me that is the intended target of their cheerful greeting from such a distance. But often there was no one behind me – many times there was a wall – making certain I was indeed the intended target of their smile or wave. I would smile or wave back, baffled at why I was receiving this greeting when they had no idea I was a children’s pastor, magician, or otherwise a “kid guy” who loved children. I had no silly costume on, no puppet, no magic trick – it was just plain ol’ regular me looking like any other adults around me.

Did I have a superpower for connecting with kids I’d never met that worked over even great distances? Often, I’d take the opportunity to introduce myself to their parents and more than a few times I ended up getting to invite them to church or to a special event that was coming up. Perhaps God had enabled me to be able to capture the eye of kids for outreach purposes?

The mystery was solved for me one day as I shared my “superpower” with a fellow children’s ministry professional over lunch when it happened with a child sitting all the way across the restaurant. This child waved at us and I commented, “That happens to me all the time!” My friend said, “Me too!” After joking that it was my superpower, my friend gently informed me that I didn’t actually have any superpowers. Instead, he revealed to me the reason why kids I’d never met would light up and greet me even from great distances. The answer was surprisingly simple.

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