Child’s Play

For those unaware, it’s been raining rather consistently here at least for the past week. However, yesterday was different. I don’t mean different in that it didn’t rain; in fact, it rained even more than usual. I mean different in that as I was driving home from work, standing water forcefully spraying up on either side as I crawled along, I don’t know what happened but I ceased to be in traffic anymore. There was no longer a single car around me. Instead, I was merely driving through puddles trying to make as big a splash as possible. That was all that mattered. I just became a kid running though puddles (albeit in a car).

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

After catching myself in a kid-like state of bliss, I realized that rather than feeling sheepish, I should instead be grateful. It’s no secret that Jesus loved children during His time on earth. I can’t tell you how many times He references children in an esteeming manner. How could I feel ashamed about imitating something Jesus so often advocated? It’s since sunk in that I’m fortunate to be able to be so content and enamored in something so…simple.

“At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, ‘Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?’ And calling to him a child, he put him in the midst of them and said, ‘Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.’” — Matthew 18:1–4

What is it about kids that caused Jesus to say this? I think it merely is the simplicity. Since childhood wasn’t all that long ago for me, I recall that life was nowhere near as complicated as I see it today. Everything was pretty much good or bad, yes or no with no in-between. If I was told to go wash my hands, I washed my hands, end of story. I didn’t evaluate the validity of the command, nor the one giving the command. I think childlike is the best way to describe Jesus’ obedience to God. Jesus was told to walk perfectly in step with the plan God laid out leading to crucifixion and that is precisely what He did. I have to imagine this is also how Adam and Eve conducted themselves before eating the apple.

“At that time Jesus declared, ‘I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that you have hidden these things from the wise and understanding and revealed them to little children; yes, Father, for such was your gracious will.’” — Matthew 11:25–26

I think wisdom was actually a result of Adam and Eve’s fall from grace. Allow me to explain. If we have the Spirit revealing the truths of God to us, then I’m not sure what more we could want in terms of knowledge. This knowledge (using the terms interchangeably right now) causes us to question God’s will and doubt both His perfection and love. It is because we are too smart for our own good. And I think it is precisely this overabundance of knowledge that prevents us from enjoying life and its Giver.

Jesus obviously noted that only children would enter heaven (even that it belonged to them) for a distinct reason. He even called children the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. Finally, He noted that God revealed to children what He hid from the wise. If we are to ignore these statements, I’m sorry but we must be brain dead. I know I try so hard to do what I think is “good”, but what I think God really wants is for me to stop taking myself too seriously by trying so hard and allow Him be my Father. This is His story, I’m merely a blessed supporting actor. Rather than having to be so mature and all, let’s just be kids in awe of a Father who gives us more than sufficient reason to be so on a daily basis.