Sunday, November 9, 2008

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Faith Like a Child

Every Tuesday and Thursday morning, on my way to Nutrition class, I
walk by a playground full of children out for recess. And every Tuesday and Thursday morning I stop to just watch them...I realize that could sound creepy, but I promise you it's not.

Last Tuesday I observed an intense soccer game taking place. There was one girl out there, playing with the boys. I was instantly transported back to my childhood. I was a Tomboy alright, always out on the field playing sports with the boys while the girls played hopscotch. I had some crazy hair back in the day. It was short...and I wouldn't ever let my mom touch it...which resulted in a really out of control knotted afro. I saw a home video of me playing soccer once. I was barreling down the field, crazy hair flowing in the wind, trying to catch up to a boy who was dribbling down about to score on our team. I got there just when he was about to kick it, stuck my foot out to get the ball, tripped him, stole the ball, and turned right around to take it down the field. What a little brat I was.

But this isn't the point.

It's hard to explain the kind of joy I get when I see those children out there. It's so simple. And beautiful. And peaceful. So...not what this world has become. I think I like it because it's a picture of what this world maybe was meant to be. When I imagine the kinds of problems they will face as they get older, the pain that they will go through...I just want them to stay that way. Stay thinking that their parents can do no wrong, that people are always out there to do good, and that the Tooth Fairy really does magically turn your tooth into money when you're sleeping.

In Mark Jesus says, "I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it."

These kids that I see playing every Tuesday and Thursday morning...they inspire me. I definitely recognize that wisdom and maturity are God given, and if one truly stays like a child all their in naivety and never growing up...they aren't going to get very far.

But I think what Jesus is talking about in Mark is that unharnessed, blind acceptance of good. That simple faith that screams, you can't touch me world...because If you've ever witnessed a child running full speed into their fathers' arms, you know what I'm talking about. In that moment all that kid cares about are those open arms and the love they are going to receive when they get there.

I am so....not like a child. I question and criticize when I should be giving and loving. I hold back when I should be sharing. And I constantly walk away from God, instead of turning around and running straight for His open arms.

So often I think we look at children and think, what can they learn from us? But maybe we should be asking ourselves, what can we learn from them?

Jesus calls us to have faith like a child. And I would love to be a kid again.