Why Lego is good for the soul: The theology of the world’s most popular building blocks

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So, there I was, sitting at my dining room table with my granddaughter. I wasn’t sure if she was old enough to be interested in Lego or if she had the manual dexterity. But then she reached into the pile and pulled out a pre-formed playground slide. After we built a structure, she took a Lego mini-figure, walked it up the steps, and let it slide. Then, filled with delight, she shouted, “It worked!”

When American architect David Greusel (lead designer of two Major League Baseball stadiums — for the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Houston Astros) saw the Twitter post citing my granddaughter’s observation, he commented, “Her take is great — I agree 100%!”

Reading his words, it occurred to me that architects, engineers and designers must also experience this same visceral joy. They design a new stadium roof, exterior cladding system, or building layout and it works!

To delight in what we create is a very human response and I think that we are all made for this kind of experience — made in the image of a creator God who delights in all that he has made.

My sense is that long before the many great designers and builders built their signature projects, they built them in their childhood bedrooms.

Building things while at play is an original world-filling activity.

In the Christian creation story, God calls humanity to be “fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it.” (Genesis 1:28) One significant way that we follow this world-filling calling is by making new things. God created the cosmos, then God called us to make more out of it — to build schools, businesses, economies and nations.

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