Little Children; May 18, 2018

Matthew 19:14 Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”

Thinking about it, Jesus had no children of his own, but children evidently liked being with Him. Children are often sensitive to the attitudes and even character of people, even more than adults are. The striking characteristic of children is that they hide nothing. I think that’s at least part of the reason Jesus said that the kingdom of heaven belongs to people like them. Adults work at giving specific impressions, but with children, what you see is what you get. God can see through any front we might put up, so it makes far more sense to be open and honest with Him and with ourselves. That’s the point of Jesus’ famous story of the Pharisee and the tax collector. (Luke 18:9-14) The tax collector was completely open and honest, and God received him as he was. It’s not at all that we are to revel in our sins, even being proud of them as some people seem to be, but it is that we are to come to Jesus as we are, just as these little children did, trusting that He will receive us and do for us what we need.

A couple of days ago I had something happen that I take as a huge compliment. I was sitting in my study when the doorbell rang, and it was our new neighbors’ 1st grade son. He said that he’d just gotten home from school, but his mother wasn’t at home. I happily went out and sat with him for a few minutes, talking about various things until his mother arrived. (When his mother arrived, very flustered, it turned out she had been at the dentist and it had taken longer than expected.) They’ve been our neighbors for less than two months, but I have spoken to them any time I’ve seen them. To me, that’s “organic evangelism,” and I’m thrilled to see some feedback. They haven’t come to a service yet, but I’m trusting that God has already chosen them for His family. I desire to be the sort of person anyone, child or adult, would not hesitate to approach, so that in the process they may draw close to the One who created them and loves them and died for them.

Father, I so often over-think things. Help me be as a little child before You, so that I won’t get in the way of others seeing Christ through me, for their salvation and Your glory. Thank You. Praise God!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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