September 24, 2000
MAY THE WORDS OF MY MOUTH ... AND THE MEDITATIONS OF ALL
OUR HEARTS ... BE ALWAYS ACCEPTABLE TO YOU --- OUR STRENGTH AND
OUR REDEEMER AMEN
Have you ever been around a child who did not get what they
wanted? .... I'm not talking about a spoiled teenager or even a
10 year old. But rather a 2 or 3 year old who still believes
their parents can -- and will -- provide anything and everything
their little hearts desire. I'm not talking about the pout or
even the temper tantrum. .... But have you ever been around a
young child who discovers -- maybe for the first time -- that
their parents cannot or will not give them everything? Have you
ever had your heart torn by their disappointment? Their despair?
We say -- and it is true -- that they have to learn
sometime. They do need to learn ... but still ... it is so very
Remember that image for a moment. ..... Now, have you ever
been around a child who is morally -- ethically -- perfectly
pure? A child who has never attempted to deceive? Never taken
anything away from another child just because they wanted it?
Never tried to manipulate events so they get their way? Have you
ever been around such a child?
I can promise you that I never have! With no offense meant
to any of our young people, a child like that would be a bit
So when Jesus talks about us needing to be like children --
which image is He calling to mind? I suspect He meant the child
who expects -- fully expects to receive everything from their
parent. Jesus wants us to be like that.
But in Mark, Jesus never tells us to be like a child. That
wording actually is in Matthew. Mark recounts Jesus telling us
to welcome the child. .. The one who believes so completely and
faithfully ... and the one who is not perfect. From this comes
some wonderful thoughts about the children around us ... how we
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