In a recent conversation with a five-year-old, it came out that using a pen, in kindergarten, is a prohibited activity. Violation of this particular law results in the punishment of putting one’s head down on the desk.
What strikes me most about this issue — other than that it still is an issue, because 46 years ago, when I was in kindergarten, using a pen at school was also disallowed for those under the age of 8 — is how petty, small, and unnecessary it is. While I’m sure that there are all sorts of reasons why young children should use chubby pencils and not ballpoint pens, many of this five year old’s (and incidentally, my) generation successfully employed pen technology at the age of 4, 3, or 2. The kids pick up, and use, the resources in their homes.
So, what does this have to do with Christianity, one asks? Well, one could argue that the pencil versus pen issue is a bit . . . picky. Unnecessary. Silly?
So it is with many of the rules we establish for ourselves within Christianity, with the major difference being that the pencil issue is at least straightforward and easy to identify. Not so with the rules we find imposing themselves upon us in our spiritual lives. If you would like to find that freedom in Christianity that people keep talking about, but it doesn’t seem to be happening for you, please follow the link to my Commonsense Christianity article at BeliefNet, Silly Little Rules.