How do you imagine God?
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When my daughter, Katie, was four-years-old she answered it best in my short story, "Portrait of God." (Picture is of Katie and her father, Tim, on her wedding day)
As I picked my four-year-old daughter, Katie, up from her nursery school one spring morning she announced, “Well, I saw him today.”
“Oh really, honey, who did you see?” I questioned.
“I was the only one too,” she gloated.
“That was really special, but why didn’t anyone else see him?” At this point I didn’t know what Katie was talking about. But whatever or whoever it was it was etched on her mind.
“I don’t know, but I was the only one. Do you know what, Mom?” asked Katie looking me straight in the eye.
“He was peeking out from the side of a cloud.”
I began to tumble onto the very creative image in Katie’s mind’s eye. Katie is very philosophical for a four-year-old and extremely creative. As many children believe, God exists right above the clouds in a shadow of gray heavenly mist. She had often talked about where He was, but never before had she expressed having seen Him.
“Was it a big cloud or a little one?” I questioned, trying to spur on Katie’s imagination and conversation.
“Oh, it was big and real white,” was her fast reply. “Ya’ know what?” Katie’s mind was running so fast that she didn’t wait for my response. “He was looking at me too.”
“He was—then you saw what God looks like.”
“Oh yes, Mommy. I was kind of scared.”
“I would have been too, Katie. Did you show anyone else when you saw Him?”
“No way,” replied my daughter.
“Tell me, Katie, what does God look like?” I asked as one adult would talk to another.
“Gee, Mom. He is big but He wasn’t standing up so I don’t know how big. He sure had a big head though.”
“Is His hair long or short?” I questioned.
“Oh pretty short. Like about to here,” said Katie as she motioned to her ear. “I think it is your color, Mom,” she added as she glanced at my brown hair.
“Did He have His eyes open?” I asked, keeping the momentum of the conversation going.
“They were looking at me, Mom. They are—oh yes, they are blue. He did this with them too.” Katie blinked briskly.
“Oh, Mommy, do you know what? God has a little mark by one of his eyes. It goes kind-of like this.” Katie pointed to one eye and demonstrated the mark with her finger.
“That is really interesting, isn’t it, Katie,” I observed.
“Yeah. Oh, and a mustache was on God too,” said Katie with all the sincerity in the world.
“Oh, so God has one of those,” I answered.
That seemed to end our conversation about Katie’s portrait of God and I’ve never heard her mention seeing Him again. I think, however, in describing God’s face, we see him everyday. As my daughter depicted the characteristics of God’s face, she had described, in detail, that of her own father. To a little girl, who can be more like God?
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