John Alan Turner

Speaker, Author, Mentor, Coach, Facilitator

Swimming In the Deep End

On Tuesdays I get to hang out with some of my favorite people in the world: The KidStuf Creative Team. Somehow, in between all the jokes and stories about Allison's summer camp experiences in Kansas and attempts to make Angela blush, we manage to produce the most innovative, exciting and relevant weekly program for helping kids instill character in their parents that I can imagine. It blows me away that there are about 90,000 children around the world who will be directly impacted by the stuff we come up with on Tuesday mornings over coffee and muffins.

I sat this morning, thinking through all the components of KidStuf. Here's what kept running through my mind: This is the greatest show I can think of. I cannot imagine a better program to foster faith and character development in children and parents than this.

And that was when my brain left the building. I have to admit that very often during these meetings my mind wanders. Sometimes it wanders to, "I wonder what would happen if J threw up right now." (J's pregnant and throws up a lot these days). Sometimes it wonders to, "I wonder if Greg knows he's got icing from the cinnamon roll on his face." (Greg's the creative director of KidStuf).

Today, however, it wandered away with the thought: This is the best thing I can imagine. And I jumped into the deep end of the swimming pool and swam out to the 11th century to talk to Anselm. I have no idea how connections are made in my brain, but somehow I went from talking about how we were going to have to make it be Christmas in August to shoot a video we'll use four months from now to talking to a French abbot in the Dark Ages.

Anselm was once asked by the monks in his monastary if he could prove the existence of God. His response was to write a huge book called the Monologion. So, then they asked him if he could do it in one sentence. (Sidebar to all the theologians and writers who may be reading this: It would be good for all of us to take this challenge periodically with whatever it is we are trying to prove. Could you do it in one sentence?).

One evening during Mass, it came to him: God is that than which nothing greater can be conceived. Think about that sentence for a second. That sentence right there never ceases to throw me into the deep end of the pool.

I'm going to stop here for today and let your mind ruminate on that sentence. God is that than which nothing greater can be conceived.

Tomorrow, maybe I'll talk some about the implications of that. If I can figure them out before then.