(Essay) The Religious Life of Children by Janie Rezner

"She Walks Upon the Earth" © Janie Rezner
“She Walks Upon the Earth” © Janie Rezner

I remember as a child going out into the pasture one warm summer evening after dinner, and climbing up on a gate, gazing into the pink and gold streaked western sky, wondering where God was.  “Are you there?”  I spent quite a while on that gate, gazing upward.  I know my son, as a child, held similar conversations, as he gazed into the night sky from his bed.

All children, if allowed to be, are deeply religious before they’ve been dulled out.  It comes with the territory for after all, they are only recently on this side. My then 12-year-old grandson in Davenport, Iowa, called some years ago to tell me that something was coming in the mail for me.  He said, much to my surprise, that he had been listening to my CD, Oquawka Speaks the Words and Music of Mother God, and that his favorite song was “Letter to Ed”.


“Letter to Ed”, a 29-minute spoken segment with my music playing behind it, is a revelation from within, as I talk about how life on Earth “ought” to be.  My little grandson, Caleb, had, of his own accord, been listening to those sacred words coming from the Temple, back there in Davenport, Iowa.  Furthermore, having prearranged it with his teacher, he took the CD to school, and the students in his 6th grade English and Art classes listened to all 29 minutes of that song.  The teacher had Caleb stop the CD and repeat certain points and phrases that she thought were important.

The song describes Paradise, a place with no time and no money, where we lived in peace and harmony.  A place where we planted and harvested and created together, and sang and danced.  A place without books and schools, where children learned “simply living, side by side with their mother and father, . . . a place where we  woke up being glad to meet the day, feeling loved,  respecting ourselves, knowing that everything we did had importance, knowing that every word that came out of our mouths was worth listening to.  And, I said, “We each have the same picture of Paradise right inside us, just on the other side of the pain.”

Every one of those children “got it” and were in agreement that this is how life is supposed to be.  I know, because they each sent me a sweet letter, thanking me for making the CD, often quoting parts of the message.  One little girl said, “You’ve given me something to think about.”  Another said, “I couldn’t have described Paradise better myself.”  A little boy said, “I think we could be good pen pals.”  Many of the letters were decorated with hearts and colored designs.

In Caleb’s class that day, after the CD had finished playing, there was a moment of silence and then a little boy said:  “Well, let’s give Caleb and his grandmother a big hand!”

So touching.   And amazing.

Oquawka 2015

Read Meet Mago Contributor Janie Rezner.