I love birthdays because they remind us to have fun. For my forty-fourth, I decided to celebrate with four different activities.
The most well-attended was puppet making in the park. To pull this off, it helps to have a mom who makes puppets and has a studio full of colorful supplies, from yarn to fabric to sequins. Awakening people’s liveliness takes little more than setting the plastic bins full of crafty goodness on a picnic table and inviting everyone to begin.
No one hesitated. No one claimed she wasn’t creative. Everyone simply picked up a paper bag or a toilet paper roll and began to construct a being that had never existed before. We had dogs and cats, a mythical rainbow animal and a magician, even a fellow who could raise his bushy purple eyebrows.
When it came time to leave, every guest said, “That was so much fun.”
Our culture often limits fun, both in importance and variety. As adults, we’re told that our responsibilities take priority over our play time and that only a few forms of play are acceptable, some of them more harmful than enjoyable.
But fun is a powerful force. It awakens our souls. It puts us in touch with God’s creativity flowing through us, and so it connects us to our selves, to our divinity.
We are the result of God having a great time. The Big Bang did not arise from a sense of obligation. When divinity decided to have a party about fourteen billion years ago and see what this existence thing was all about, a great outpouring of love and joy set this universe in motion.
That outpouring hasn’t stopped. We are the current manifestation of the divine party that has always been and will always be. Let’s have some fun.