“People were bringing little children to him in order that he might touch them, and the disciples spoke sternly to them. But when Jesus saw this, he was indignant and said to them, ‘Let the little children come to me; do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of God belongs.’” (Mark 10:13-14)
The disciples were a serious bunch. They were worried about how they could help Jesus, concerned about who got access to Him, and anxious to protect Him.
The religious authorities who were carefully watching Jesus were also very serious. They were worried about what Jesus was doing, concerned that He was breaking the rules, anxious about what He was saying, and threatened that He was challenging their authority.
One day some children got through all the serious folks and ended up in Jesus’ lap. When the disciples sternly spoke to the unruly children, Jesus scolds them by saying, “Let the little children come to me…”
What would it mean for us to become more child-like (not childish) as we come to Jesus? Would we feel self-conscious? Inhibited? Unworthy? How can we become more like a child, given that our inclination is often to act more like the serious-bossy-disciples or the serious-threatened-Pharisees?
One quality Jesus encourages us to emulate from children is trust. The children trusted Jesus because they felt safe with Him. Do we trust Jesus enough to feel safe with Him?
Another quality Jesus encourages us to emulate from children is their ability to play. Could Jesus be calling us to be more playful? When was the last time we really laughed, had fun, and cut up? Sadly, many adults lose the ability to play.
Even in the midst of all the serious things going on in our lives, Jesus invites us to become trusting and playful like children. The gospels reveal that the serious folks often didn’t understand Jesus. The gospels also reveal that the children did.
- What would it mean for you to come to Jesus like a child?
- One quality that Jesus wants us to learn from children is to trust Him. Do you trust Jesus with your life, your hopes and dreams, your needs and desires, your messes and mistakes, and your eternal life?
- Another quality that Jesus wants us to learn from children is to be playful. When was the last time you played, relaxed, and let go of all your serious concerns and worries? If you’re inclined to act like the serious disciples or the serious Pharisees, what would help you to lighten up?