Children in the Face of Busyness
By Amy Huynh
This is the buzzword used in almost any description of what being a Capital Fellow is actually like. Lived out on any given day, this can mean anything and everything from finger darts** with fourth and fifth graders to critical reflection over our innate design for vocation to hour+ long commutes through some of the worst traffic in the country to a mind-blowing documentary on the deteriorating issues of the American education system to a leap back down the dusty corridors of eighth grade algebra. Busy.
Yet, I’m realizing that it’s a busy that lies not only in our physical schedules, but also in our hearts and minds. It’s been one full month since kick-off, and we’re finally experiencing a full “normal” week of Capital Fellows that includes all of our commitments, but busy lies in us still transitioning into a new city and new relationships. It lies in us slowly making sense of our own identities, wants, needs, and callings even as we dive head-first into tutoring, teaching Sunday School classes, and working at our internships. And it lies in figuring out how to continually embrace Jesus in the midst of it all.
I’m realizing how good it has been to experience busy through a safe and supportive community like Capital Fellows. Everywhere I turn, there are people willing to walk and pray with me as I recognize the sinfulness and selfishness that busy exposes in me. One of my (many) favorite concepts that I’ve learned from my internship with the Children’s Ministry team at McLean Presbyterian Church is the idea of leaning into the opportunities to acknowledge and show love to others even in the midst of chaos. In Children’s Ministry, this means stopping to smile, look a child in the eye, and genuinely getting to know them even on a busy Sunday morning when dozens of people are swarming around you. It’s in slowing down and listening that we not only build genuine relationships but also taste and see more of what God is offering us in this present moment.
Furthermore, it’s in tasting and seeing God’s goodness that we remember our own role first and foremost as children of God. We come not to control and manipulate every situation to our own standards, but to listen and obey as His beloved children.
And calling to him a child, he put him in the midst of them and said, "Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven" -- Matthew 18:2-4.
Between serving with Children’s Ministry, tutoring at Cornerstone School, and living with three host siblings all under the age of twelve, I’ve found myself surrounded by so many children in the past few weeks. I’m learning that with children, chaos is almost always a given. Children know no other way to be than their raw, honest selves and that includes externalizing both pure anger when they feel wronged and pure joy and laughter when they experience delight. This past Sunday, Pastor James Forsyth reminded us that God calls us not to be cynics but rather children. As I reflect on this and all the children in my current life, I’m realizing this means stripping down to our raw, honest selves in our interactions with others, ourselves, and God.
How scary is that thought? Yet, it’s in this relief from focusing on our own masks that we’re able to freely focus on others in true humility, especially in the face of busyness. Maturity is leaning into the guidance of the Holy Spirit as we learn how to be rawfully, genuinely angry and sorrowful and fearful and awed and joyful over the right things. It’s learning to ask for help and admit our own vulnerability as we rest in the assurance that we are fully loved and secure in Christ. Through honestly accepting the chaos in our lives, God continues weaving our hearts together in righteous order. Please pray that the other Fellows and I would grow in wholeheartedly claiming our identity as children of God as we face the busyness in our new lives!
** Finger Darts - A delightful, fast-paced game played during Club 45 (youth group for fourth and fifth graders at McLean Presbyterian) that involves the launching of foam darts via fingers in a dodgeball-style competition between two sides, which may or may not lead to intense muscle soreness the following day due to intense sniper-like competitiveness (looking at you, Brian McClain)
Pictures from the Week
Did you Know?
Capital Fellows is one of 30 fellows programs in The Fellows Initiative. These programs are in churches and cities across the country, from Virginia to California. Please be in prayer for the more than 250 fellows and more than 45 program staff across the country this year, that God would bless them as they grow together in all the aspects of the fellows experience.
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