March 21, 2023
13 People were bringing little children to Jesus for him to place his hands on them, but the disciples rebuked them. 14 When Jesus saw this, he was indignant. He said to them, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. 15 Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”16 And he took the children in his arms, placed his hands on them and blessed them.
The Little Children and Jesus
Because, at this point in the Bible, Jesus was already known as the great miracle man, when he stopped in towns, people gathered to see him, to hear him, to touch him. Parents of small children were particularly set on having Jesus lay his hands on their children, to bless them, but also for him to heal the ones who were sick. The closer the children got to Jesus, the more indignant the disciples became. But, Jesus was very clear on his stand and immediately rebuked them! The disciples felt like the children were “getting in the way”, while Jesus felt the children “were the way!” Why? The description of a very small child is this: innocent, humble, helpless. If you are parents, can you remember your little children being like this? This description is exactly what God craves from us (even as adults): innocence, humility, needing him, following him, helpless without him. God’s depiction of the small child and his deep desire for an intimate relationship with us is pictured so beautifully in the images of a small child snuggling up to Jesus on his lap.
Children have always had a special role in the stories of the Bible. Think back to the feeding of the 5,000. God could have picked anybody to bring those 2 fish and 7 loaves of bread. But, who did he choose? A young boy found by Andrew in the massive crowd. A young, innocent, humble child.
It is so very important for us to instill faith in our children from the very beginning. Those seeds that are sown grow into trees. And even when the trees wither or lose their leaves through the storms of life over the years, the roots are still there, holding them strong and supporting them. Young children are the best examples of true faith and love because they have it and they give it without demanding anything in return. Jesus loves his little children. All of them. And you are one too! Never forget your special place in God’s heart. It is reserved just for you.
Prayer: Dear Father God, thank you for letting us see the image of Jesus in our children. Help us to be loving and humble, just like your Son, so that we may radiate the name of Jesus wherever we may go. We give you all glory and praise that we belong to you and your precious kingdom! In your holiness we pray. Amen.