Skunkguin is a half skunk, half penguin created by my husband. Scott didn’t know he was making a half skunk, half penguin when he made Skunkguin. He just thought he was making a skunk.
But two weeks into our marriage, I discovered Skunkguin.
“What is this?”
“I know it’s a puppet…. But what animal is it supposed to be be? A penguin?”
“Honey, it’s clearly a skunk.”
“It has a very penguin-looking beak…”
“But please note its skunk tail. It is most definitely a skunk.”
“Are you sure?”
“Of course I’m sure. I made him. ”
“I don’t know, honey. It looks like his mother was a skunk and his father was a penguin. He’s a skunk-penguin. A skunkguin.”
And thus was Skunkguin re-created. (Don’t take car rides with us. Skunkguin and I have a jolly good time, and Scott just laughs and laughs and laughs. I imagine it would be irritating to those outside our little family.)
Vacation Bible School was a few weeks ago, and Skunkguin made his grand, Faith VBS debut. I had the lovely delight of teaching 73 kindergarteners each night’s Bible story. (And there is no touch of sarcasm in that phrase… it was truly a delight.)
On the last night, Skunkguin aided me in talking about the apostles and the early church. Skunkguin was so excited about his yellow play-doh he had just gotten that he kept yelling, “yellow play-doh!” right in the middle of the lesson.
“There once were two men named—"
“Skunkguin, please, its story time. These two men were named Peter and—"
And so we continued. Skunkguin was so excited about this yellow play-doh that he couldn’t stop talking about it… Skunkguin learned that Peter and James were so excited about Christ that they couldn’t stop talking about him either. And the Kindergarteners learned that when you’re excited about something, when you truly love something, you want everyone to know!
I’ve been met by Kindergarteners with yells of, “YELLOW PLAY-DOH!” in the hallways of church ever since.
So… what’s your “yellow play-doh”?
What makes you so incredibly excited that you can’t stop shouting? What makes you jump out of bed in the morning? What do you mark on your calendar and look forward to? What do you wait for, hope for, plan for? It elicits a crackle of energy.
What “makes your day”? What makes you smile? What makes you feel alive?
Because that will tell you what you’re loving, praising—what you’re giving your life to.
Don’t church-it-up for me.
What is it?
Too often life is characterized by the “yellow play-doh” of experiences, things, people, family, or even the feelings and emotions those different situations elicit. Life so easily consists of the abundance of things. Not possessions, perhaps, but experiences, plans, and people.
Evaluate your love solemnly.
For one man spent a lifetime exploring different varieties of play-doh, and he did write: “so I commend the enjoyment of life, because there is nothing better for a person under the sun than to eat and drink and be glad. Then joy will accompany them in their toil all the days of the life God has given them under the sun”
But this was followed by, “remember your Creator in the days of your youth… Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the duty of all mankind.”
Don’t curl your nose up at the use of “duty,” for in this duty is found the most delightful joy….
“You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.”
A lifetime, an eternity of the most exciting joy you can possibly imagine.
**Ecclesiastes 8:15, Ecclesiastes 12, Psalm 16:11