Eric's Sunday Sermon on Being a Child
The rose through the eye of a child.
The Joy of a Child's Perspective.
Fresh, innocent, inquisitive and without judgment are wonderful ways to look at the world. A child can and normally does act that way. Of course there are exceptions and also adults can ruin this very early. But a child is predisposed to open and fresh ideas and experiences. Real fear comes later and rules must be followed. But in general it is a free for all in discovery of life and all it has to offer.
Note very clearly here that a steady well defined set of rules actually gives a child more freedom to explore within those boundaries. It frees the child from consequences of breaking rules that they do not know.Oh how true this is of our adult lives. Just give us the rules of the game and do not change them and we can thrive in security and a freedom to pursue excellence. Abraham Lincoln said to the effect: "Obedience of the law is the greatest freedom". It is no less true for the child or the child within us.
Just a thought here. Have you ever seen a child get a toy in a big box. And the greatest toy received by the child is the box? Well maybe we buy lousy toys because this is a constant occurrence around this home.
How about you?
Are you more of a child than an adult?
To be or not to be? That is the question.
Now here are two bible versus taken out of context but given here to exemplify and amplify the dichotomy we always face. We must receive our world like a child and receive those matters of faith like a child. This could be no more of a dire warning to us to do so.It was
When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me.1 Corinthians 13:11.
And yet here we see that we are to grow up and act like an adult. We must assume that we grow up at some point in faith. …But Jesus called for them, saying, "Permit the children to come to Me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. "Truly I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child will not enter it at all." Luke 18:16.17.
Let us leave the bible and faith out of the equation for a moment. How does this effect us in the secular day to day? Are we to be schizophrenic switching back and forth like a monkey on a vine? How in the heck do we do this in our lives?
Every bird, rock and tree is new and exciting and brings with them a thousand questions.
Judgment is the key!
When an adult walks she gauges things like the distance of a step, the speed of a car or the safety of a place. It is so ingrained after years of experience it is not even noticed. This is a good thing and allows us to move and act quickly and efficiently without even noticing it. However this is a bad thing if we become "numb" to what is around us.
We must stay focused in the moment and not use our judgment as a means to be complacent and not look at the world with fresh receiving eyes and hearts. Certainly harsh judgments of new things and new people are to be avoided as that "first sight" is the critical sight for opening the world around us and taking it in like a child. This is not a child's game here, this is serious business.
Just take a homeless man on the street. Our adult judgment says he is dirty and drunk and should be avoided. Our child does not make all these negative judgments a priori. And in fact neither should we. Are we too busy or are we to judgmental of our brothers and sisters to take the time to love them as a child would love a stranger if we did not tell them not to, both by word and deed. (if that sounds a bit condemning - it is meant to, you will know for you)
Assume this is the kingdom of God right here, just for a moment. Would we go around pre-judging things we did not know for sure or would we take them in as a child and wonder and marvel at each new thing brought before us?
What delight a child has in the most simple things.
Do not run around acting like a child!
The purpose here is not to get you to act immature or to avoid your responsibilities. The point is that we do not need to worry so much and to take ourselves so seriously. Most of us do all of that to well. If we really look at it we are very responsible adults. And we worry about all of life's problems everyday. We do not need a reminder to do such things.
What we is a break and to be in the moment like a child. We need to sometimes forget all that we have learned and just let go and be a child. The world is beautiful through the eyes of a child and only gets better as we get older if we do not put our big boy adult blinders on. Is it too much to ask that we each spend at least a few moments a day being carefree, joyous and happy like a child.
Let us pray for protection from what life gives in harshness so we can relax and accept what life gives in love.
You have enough, do not take mine!
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