Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Matthew 18:2-3

"And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them,
And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven."
Matthew 18:2-3

The disciples were asking Christ who is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven, and this was part of his response.  Then he told them that whoever humbled himself like this little child was the greatest.  I think that this is a hard lesson for us sometimes, because our society to one degree or another teaches us to keep score. :)  We compare ourselves to others and get pretty competitive, and we want to know what it takes to get ahead... to win.  I think we learn this early, but hopefully at least, very young children don't have that cutthroat instinct yet.  They walk up to you and hand you a toy so you can admire it.  They grin at you, inviting you to share the love and the joy that they feel.  They humbly ask you to do things that they can't do for themselves, without being able to express themselves verbally much.  And I'm not saying it is all perfect all the time.  They get tired and cranky and frustrated too, just like the rest of us.  But they aren't worried about who is the best.  And they just naturally love you, without needing a reason why, or trying to find a benefit in it.  And, apparently, we need to learn to be like little children in order to enter heaven.  Maybe that is a place to start.
Sometimes it seems like there are as many things to unlearn in life as there are to learn, in order to do things God's way.  How do we distance ourselves from the distrust that we have developed?  How do we let go of pride and the method for getting ahead that we have memorized, and realize that we're getting ahead in the wrong race entirely?  Truthfully, I don't know, but I think that these verses help us think about what our goals should be.  To be open, and loving.  To be curious and full of delight, even with the smallest joys and successes.
Today, let's try not to pretend to know everything.  Let's learn.  Let's not try to be better than other people, but just to improve and to enjoy wherever we are, whatever we're doing, and whoever we are with.  Let's be open, and welcoming, and love with wild abandon... not worrying about politics, position, or personality. :)  Just sincerely loving everyone around us, and offering to share the joy of the day.

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