Archive for the ‘parenthood’ Category

Little Children

February 2, 2016

“Unless you turn to God from your sins and become as little children, you will never get into the Kingdom of Heaven.  Therefore anyone who humbles himself as this little child is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven.”  Matt 18:3-4

 

People have commented on this passage through the ages, speculating on what Jesus could have meant about becoming as little children.  I visualize temper tantrums and people carrying their screaming children out of public places, and I’m sure that was not what he meant.  Some have said God prefers we be innocent and ignorant because God loves simplicity.  I’m not sure about that, because in other places we’re told to learn and be wise.  Others have said we should be as un-self conscious as children.  That could be true, for if we are thinking more about God and what He wants than about ourselves and what we want, that would be in keeping with the teachings of Jesus.  But I think the key to the whole idea is in the second line “anyone who humbles himself as this little child…”   Children recognize they don’t know much and don’t have the strength to do much.  They also recognize when they’ve messed up something, and they need help to set it right again.  Its this attitude that I think Jesus was talking about.  He wants us to come to Him for wisdom, for strength, and most of all for the forgiveness and cleansing we need to get right with the Father.  If we get proud and arrogant, we think we know it all and can do just fine on our own.  We think we really don’t need God.  And with that attitude, we don’t come to Jesus and get what we really do need.

Old Wisdom

April 1, 2012

Sometimes a discovery will leave me pleasantly surprised.  We think our world is unique in its technological advancement and sophistication, yet some wisdom is timeless.  Here is my discovery today.

“You know that the beginning is the most important part of any work, especially in the case of a young and tender thing; for that is the time at which the character is being formed and the desired impression is more readily taken…Shall we just carelessly allow children to hear any casual tales which may be devised by casual persons, and to receive into their minds ideas for the most part the very opposite of those which we should wish them to have when they are grown up?  We cannot…Anything received into the mind at that age is likely to become indelible and unalterable; and therefore it is most important that the tales which the young first hear should be models of virtuous thoughts…”

Who do you suppose said this, and how long ago?

Plato

Fathers Day

June 21, 2011

I absolutely loved the “Peanuts” Father’s Day cartoon.  Charlie Brown admits his dad can’t golf or bowl as well as Lucy’s dad, but when he goes into his dad’s barber shop, no matter how busy it is, his dad gives him a big smile because “he likes me.”

Dad’s do two things no one else can do in a child’s life.  Dads, whether worthy or not, portray the heavenly father for their children.  A cruel or abusive dad portrays God as an angry, punitive father.  A dad who teaches the child character and morals, while patiently helping them learn to make decisions, set goals, do their best, challenge themselves, and love with real world love, gives them a picture of a God they can love and desire to know.

The other thing Dad’s do is like their kids.  Kids know their mothers love them unconditionally.  Dad’s approval has to be earned.  When Dad teaches his child what to do to be a worthy human being, forgives them when they fail, but insists they have another “go” at it to do it right, they earn his approval.  While he critiques them, he doesn’t reject them.  Such a dad gives his kids real confidence, honest and realistic confidence, and they live for his approval.  Such kids are achievers, and they are secure knowing “my dad likes me.”  They also see the model of a God who has standards, yet has compassion, and who likes them.

To my Heavenly Father

February 19, 2010

Lord, I was thinking about how it must break Your heart that so many of Your children ignore You.  I know how sad I would feel, if after giving my very best to my children, they would ignore me.  Yet I am often guilty of the same thing with You.  So often on busy days, I give up quality time with You.  This is the last thing I should do, when I wouldn’t have a life at all if it weren’t for You.  Not only that, but time with You, pouring out my thoughts and feelings, and then listening to You, fills me with peace.  Thank You Lord, for the gift of Yourself.  Thank You for having children and caring for them.  I wouldn’t exist if You had not done that.  Thank You that you never stop thinking about me even when I’m not thinking about You.