We had Family Home Evening tonight. We sang our ‘Jesus wants me for a Sunbeam,’ prayed, and got to the lesson. We were going to talk briefly on ‘likening the scriptures to us,’ but we decided to do it instead of talking about it.
Betsey’s two and one of her favorite games is a sort of hide-and-go-seek peekaboo.
How shall I explain this? Sara and I rushed to the bathroom and Betsey came scooting around till she found us and we all said ‘peekaboo’ and then we went to the kitchen and then back to the bathroom, and every time she found us with a peekaboo. No one not a parent–no one not ourselves–can understand how it felt to see her eager face and her waggling pigtails.
Then came the time to try and liken. We explained to her that Joseph Smith prayed one time. When he did, he saw his Father and his Brother. We’d see them too someday, we told her. Peekaboo is a little, little taste of the same happy shock. That’s what we told her. Silly, I know, but when told to a small child it takes on a sort of significance. She puts more meaning into things, I think, than we do. At least we know that Gordon approves.
Maybe this homely likening will stick in her mind somehow, next time she plays peekaboo. Maybe it will stick in ours. C.S. Lewis says that the miracles of Jesus were meant to teach us that all existence and all life is a result of God’s miraculous intervention. The wine at Cana, he says, should teach us when we see the grape to acknowledge the miracle of its growth. It is God’s doing as surely as Cana. The arrow runs both ways, of course. The grape can remind us of Cana, and of He who made the grape holy.
And the peekaboo, who knows, can muster in our minds the hands that will peel back the scroll of heavens, the Face we’ll see then, either in horror if we’re strangers or in glee–giddy, eager glee–if we are then Sons or Daughters. Only in home life, in home life writ large, can the silly and the sacred and the routine all tumble together so tightly there’s no sorting them and who’d want to.
Peekaboo. Jesus. God’s Face and pigtails. The more I live the more I salute the wisdom of Dr. Johnson: “To be happy at home is the ultimate end of all human ambition.”