When Watching Cartoons is Worship

My coffee was hot, and the house was still quiet. The sunroom and my books were beckoning for a few minutes of silence in the middle of what has been a slew of really busy days.

Then I heard the shuffling, and Sam came around the corner on his sprained ankle.

He was off his crutches and showing me how he could put weight on his ankle. I congratulated him, hiding my disappointment as hopes for solitude slipped away as quickly as my coffee cooled.

When Sam wakes up, he starts talking. He’s the baby of the family and at 11 years old is still used to an audience. It will be interesting to see if the teen years quiet him at all. Part of me hopes they don’t.

The evening before he had made a stack of cartoon DVDs and issued strong yet unfruitful petitions trying to talk someone into watching one with him. He lives in a house of busy adults and teens, and cartoons aren’t high on anyone else’s priority list.

Now as I mentally strategized how to occupy Sam, assuage my mom guilt, and still steal a few minutes of solitude the thought came to me. Watch cartoons.

But I need my quiet time. There’s so much going on in our lives right now. Our faith is being stretched to new heights. The Bible verses I copy, the notes I make, and the prayers I pray are my lifeline. They are the food that feed my soul and spirit.


Yes, cartoons. My spirit knew not only Sam needed me, but I needed Sam . . on his turf.

You should’ve seen his shock when I asked if he wanted to watch cartoons with me. His face said it all, “Who are you and what did you do with my mother?”

But his mouth issued an incredulous and enthusiastic, “Yeah!”

He snuggled close (rarer and rarer as he nears adolescence), as we laughed out loud at the antics of Tom & Jerry.

As I sipped my cold coffee, nothing could have felt or been more right. Peace, joy, even strength . . they were all right there. Sam’s need and mine fit perfectly together like two puzzle pieces and brought a surprising wholeness to those moments.

I expected God to meet me in my solitude and study. But He had other plans. 

Too often I assume how, when, and where God will show up. I limit Him to my idea of “holy.” But I kinda love it when He blows my expectations and narrow idea of who He is once again.

And He makes my couch holy ground and cartoons with Sam worship.

Has God surprised you by showing up in an unconventional meeting place? I’d love to hear about it in the comments!


  1. Beth Stiff

    Kim, I really do love the way you write. You simply draw me in. This was beautiful. This right here ~> "I expected God to meet me in my solitude and study. But He had other plans." And then this ~> "But I kinda love it when He blows my expectations and narrow idea of who He is once again." Me too! Blessings to you.

    • kimhyland

      Thank you so much, Beth! It's very encouraging to know you were blessed 🙂

  2. Jenn

    This is such a beautiful blog Kim. It made me smile so big. Thank you . Today God suprised to me. He spoke to me big as I cleaned out my car trunk .. lol.. which was quite the task.

    • kimhyland

      Thanks, Jenn! I can't wait to read your post. He's full of surprises!

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