I am attempting to post a weekly blog for the foreseeable future. Every other week these posts will be reposts. I had been a contributor on two different sites that have since closed or changed to no longer include blogs. I will be reposting pieces that had originally been featured on one of these two sites.
This was originally posted March 31, 2011
I heard Jerry Root speak on Matthew 18:3,
“...become like little children…”
He listed many characteristics of children that Jesus could have been referring to and then spent most of the talk expounding on the idea that children are not complete; that they are always learning. Now that I have a son I’ve been noticing HOW he learns.
Mostly, my son learns from me by mimicking what I do. He has no shame and no hesitation; he just sees me doing something and does it. He doesn’t ask about my reasons or even if he should follow me. He just smiles and mimics.
Sometimes he does things he isn’t quite ready for, like urinating standing up or drinking a sip of coffee. Sometimes he mimics when it isn’t correct to do so, like when I say “come here, Isaiah” and he answers with “come here, Isaiah”. Sometimes he mimics without proper understanding, like when he types furiously on the keyboard closing programs and creating error messages. Sometimes he helps in such a way that hinders progress, like when he wants to open the door but he isn’t quite tall enough to turn the key or smoothly turn the handle. Sometimes he copies me when it’s just plain foolish to do so, like when I’m dancing (trust me that this is foolish). It is mimicry, but a mindless, blind, irrational mimicry.
But he never questions or over-thinks or tells me he’ll do it later. He gets annoyed or frustrated if his mom or I don’t have all of our attention on him. And he cheers when I kiss him, just like I cheer when he kisses me.
This is such a contrast to how I mimic my heavenly Father (as revealed in the Son, Jesus Christ). I have rationalizations for not immediately doing most of the actions Christ modeled. I have bargains worked out to justify doing things “later” or not at all. I’m an expert at intellectualizing Scripture; concluding that the simple reading doesn’t apply to me. Of course, I’ll do what Jesus modeled, after I have proper understanding and practice, and when and if the opportune moment presents itself. I tell myself I’m likely to do something wrong so I have an excuse to not do anything.
Sometimes I ask my heavenly Father to turn his attention elsewhere for awhile. And sometimes I don’t even notice when he kisses me.
Oh that I could let go of what hinders me; hear and follow the Spirit’s direction. Oh that I could foolishly follow my Father.
Oh that I could humble myself and become like my little child.