An argument arose among them as to which of them was the greatest. But Jesus, knowing the reasoning of their hearts, took a child and put him by his side and said to them, “Whoever receives this child in my name receives me, and whoever receives me receives him who sent me. For he who is least among you all is the one who is great.” Luke 9:46-48
The sun has gone back in behind the clouds here in Sitka. We had several straight days of sunshine and I got hoping for summer. The weather was warm-ish for a time and so it was easy to think of those boundless days of running in the waves and playing games even after the sun set, talking into the night in the warm summer sand. The beach and especially the beach in Cape May Point is where summer and being a kids was. And still is. That freedom to run wild and laugh and imagine. And one or two steps into that sand can make me feel like a child again.
Jesus was, as always, in the midst of a controversy. The religious authorities were angry with him and a bit afraid. His words pointed to Jesus taking authority and control away from them. His disciples were also debating among themselves who was first among them. Jesus looked to a child to explain who he was and who would be first in God's kingdom. God invites us to seek our honest selves, our simple selves as we come into relationship with the Divine. Not our high and mighty, self-righteous selves, but the real people who are boundless, compassionate, needy, messy and willing to revel in joy.
Today I ask God to help me seek the Creator more deeply as a child. May we put off all pretense and attitude and openly run to the arms of God. May we take off our shoes and run in the sand, loving and celebrating every breath we have been given. And may we put aside our battles for control and authority as we welcome the children in us everywhere.