Scripture Reading: Matthew 18:1-10
“Beware that you don’t look down on any of these little ones. For I tell you that in heaven their angels are always in the presence of my heavenly father.” (Mt. 18:10 NLT)
Jesus had a special heart felt love for children. When he questioned the motives of the disciples who were arguing about their position in the kingdom, he took a small child in his arms and used the little one as an example of greatness. This mild rebuke taught the disciples a great lesson about faith and humility.
Jesus’ use of children shows us how much we can learn from them. Children have a simple faith. They entertain few doubts and exhibit a wild-eyed curiosity, innocent trust, and eagerness to please, that Jesus would love to see in us.
Perhaps you remember the courtroom scene in the movie Miracle on 34th Street where the prosecutor’s son was put on the stand to testify. The defense attorney asked him, “Do you believe in Santa Claus?” The boy answered, “Sure I do.” When he was asked, “How do you know?” He looked at his daddy (who was the prosecutor) and answered, “Because my daddy told me so, didn’t you daddy?” Of course the spectators roared with laughter but the point is well taken. Children are quick to believe what they hear and regard it as the gospel truth. My wife taught first and second graders in a rural public school and children would go home at night and relate the day’s events. How many times have you had one of your children come home and say, “The teacher said so” as if that were the gospel truth?
Children are sensitive to parental approval and disapproval. Caught with the proverbial hand in the cookie jar the child stands before the parent. A stern reprimand brings a gush of tears and a crestfallen look. The sobbing is intermingled with whispers of “I’m sorry and I promise not to do it again.” These evidences of remorse reveal the genuineness of their sorrow. No loving parent would withhold love, acceptance, and forgiveness from such a display of brokenness. And neither does your heavenly father cast you aside when you confess your sin, and plead for his forgiveness.
My wife has a soft place in her heart for pre-school age children, and believes children are never too young to learn about God and his love.
How does God want you to approach him? Doesn’t he want you to come with a childlike heart? Why don’t you to sit down right now and tell God what is breaking your heart?
Payer: Dear Lord, listen to my bleeding heart. Help me become more childlike in my attitude and approach to you. Help me be like a child who is quick to admit wrongs and seek forgiveness.