No! Not Dorothy speaking in The Wizard of Oz. No! Not the Jazmine Sullivan song either.
The Lions and Tigers and Bears I’m referring to aren’t as melodic, but they indeed can provide comfort and sooth the heart and soul such as music does. Aside from the most popular references of the phrase, there is also a concept of Lions, Tigers and Bears that derives from a comic book series. I’m not a fan of comic books, but in working with youth, over the years, you get introduced to new things all of the time.
This series, as strange as it may sound, is very relevant to young people across the country. When put into context, it is actually pretty amazing! Do you remember the childhood fears that were once upon us? Fears such as, monsters under the bed…in the closets…peeking through the windows. All of us remember the time in our lives, and the lives of others, when there were ‘monsters under our beds’. Monsters so scary that we couldn’t sleep in our beds – we insisted on crawling into bed with our parents or those who could protect us. Or at the very least, they had to look under the bed, in the closet, and out of the window and give us that priceless line…”There isn’t anything here to get you.” Furthermore, during this stage in our lives, we realize the critical role stuffed animals play in our peace of mind.
In this comic book story, young Joey Price realizes that his stuffed animals can actually come to life and protect him. Protect him from life’s ‘monsters’ that come to get him in the middle of the night. Imagine that! As defenseless as young Joey is, his animals come to his aid.
The author goes on to state:
“A child’s instinctual need for the comfort of a stuffed animal is rooted in a reality long forgotten by the adult world. The hidden truth is that these companions have been defending children since the dawn of time. This story follows young Joey on the adventure of a lifetime as he travels through, what they call it, the Stuffed Animal Kingdom, a journey that puts the fate of all the world’s children in his hands and brings him face to face with his destiny.”
As we are confronted with ‘monsters’ in our lives, it is critical that we have Lions, Tigers and Bears that can come to our aid. Furthermore, it is imperative that we serve as Lions, Tigers and Bears to others. This is how we truly change the world, and save our children…just as young Joey did in the Stuffed Animal Kingdom.
With God, nothing is impossible…
© David McGhee