Bob and Weave

Musings of an impostor. Welcome to the masquerade.

What Children Teach Us: Intro

Posted by flyingbk on 10/24/2016

16 But Jesus called the children to him and said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. 17 Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”
-Luke 18:16-17 (NIV)

Back in the day, there was a season in my life in which I received many prophecies. Regardless of your views about the prophetic, I love that its main aim is to “strengthen, encourage, and comfort” (1 Corinthians 14:3).

I received one prophecy that I will never forget. A lady was speaking over me, and she said something like this: “Bob, I see you as a child moving into adulthood. (NOTE: I was already an adult, at least by age.) And I see you saying to God, ‘Well, I don’t want to give up those things.’ And God wants you to know that it’s OK. (Insert girlish giggle. No really, she giggled.) It’s OK to hold on those things. It’s who you are.”

I made a simple New Year’s resolution at the beginning of 2015. It was this: “Children are people, too.” I had been serving at a church where the main demographic was married couples with small children. And quite frankly, I loathed being around children. My posture stiffened, and I wanted to do nothing with talking to them, holding them, or even being a few feet from them. I cringed when I saw others talking to them in that baby goo-goo-gah-gah language. I have a close friend who was similar to me until he had his first son. So I figured I would be like him: When I have my first child, I’ll magically transform into a wonderful dad who loves being around the little ones.

But when I made that resolution, there was actually magical change (thanks God). I suddenly became more comfortable. I began playing with them more, and even being proactive in making up the distance between me and them. And yes, I learned to humble myself and try talking to them in their pared-down language. I even recently told a close friend that I missed seeing her daughter. That would NEVER have happened before. I’m still iffy about holding them; I still have this deathly fear that I’ll drop or crush them due to my poor form.

In the 22 months in which I’ve been better with children, I realize that I’ve learned so much from their words and actions. Like Jesus stated in the above verses, the kingdom of God belongs to them, and we miss out on being full participants of his kingdom when we do not apply the lessons they provide.

During Jesus’ time, children were considered worthless. So he was making quite the statement when he took them into his arms, and his words in Luke 18:16-17 would’ve stunned those in attendance. Certainly, today’s society values children, but I’m not sure that we’re listening well to what they have to teach us.

So I’m excited to start a new series concerning the lessons children give (I’ll be resuming my 103rd Psalm series on Wednesdays). Each lesson will start with the letter “C.” These lessons came to me during Sunday worship yesterday, and I feverishly scratched out notes in my Moleskine. Like children, we are to be carefree, celebrators, cuddlers, and contenders. And finally, it’s actually quite alright to be childish; in fact, we can only attain true love and community when we accept each other as childish. I’ll be supplementing each post with real examples from the children I’ve been around.

The church I’ve joined features quite the young demographic. I’m usually surrounded by people at least 10 years younger than me. At a lunch table last week, I was seated with three 23 year-olds (two in grad school, one working for a year). I’d like to think that being around them has re-brought out my childlike tendencies. Two have even said to me that they thought I was only in my late 20’s or early 30’s, and they were surprised to learn of my age since I’m so young at heart (No seriously, I’m not making that up). These young’uns generally possess a freshness and love for life that has proved to be a fountain of youth for me. They ain’t jaded yet, and I long to have any remnants of jadedness excised from my heart and soul.

I can’t wait to get started. In the meantime, go check out my friend Irene’s recent blog post about a lesson she learned from her child. And read John Piper’s 10 resolutions for mental health: You’ll be able to sketch the childlikeness in each one. Till next week!


2 Responses to “What Children Teach Us: Intro”

  1. […] first lesson I have learned from children (intro here) is the value of being carefree. One main shackle that holds us all back is the fear of man: […]

  2. […] the intro and Part I of this “What Children Teach Us” […]

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