At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, "Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?" He called a child, whom he put among them, and said, "Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever becomes humble like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. Whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me.
"If any of you put a stumbling block before one of these little ones who believe in me, it would be better for you if a great millstone were fastened around your neck and you were drowned in the depth of the sea. Woe to the world because of stumbling blocks! Occasions for stumbling are bound to come, but woe to the one by whom the stumbling block comes!
"If your hand or your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it away; it is better for you to enter life maimed or lame than to have two hands or two feet and to be thrown into the eternal fire. And if your eye causes you to stumble, tear it out and throw it away; it is better for you to enter life with one eye than to have two eyes and to be thrown into the hell of fire.
"Take care that you do not despise one of these little ones; for, I tell you, in heaven their angels continually see the face of my Father in heaven. What do you think? If a shepherd has a hundred sheep, and one of them has gone astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine on the mountains and go in search of the one that went astray? And if he finds it, truly I tell you, he rejoices over it more than over the ninety-nine that never went astray. So it is not the will of your Father in heaven that one of these little ones should be lost." Matthew 18:1-14
Dear Aunt Elizabeth,
The news these days is pretty scary. We have been told that the government is looking for a child born rumored to be the next king. This occupying Roman government is so paranoid that they would believe that a little baby was a threat to their power and control! This little boy, so sweet and perfect is also so vulnerable and needy. Like all babies, we have to do everything for him. And we do it with joy. Despite the fact that the government is looking for him, they will never find him. The people here are happy to keep our secret. Nobody thinks that the cops would bother looking in a stable for a king. How foolish the rich and powerful are. God always seems to chose out of the way places and people!
The folks around here continue to be so helpful and supportive during my recuperation time. I am able to get out for a few minutes at a time and walk around. I feel very strong. The wise women, who seem to check on me constantly, don't want me to do much at all until I am completely recovered. They are very bossy! But they also are gathering our food, cooking our meals and washing our clothes as well as the baby's diapers! I can never repay their kindness. Somehow they all seem to think this child is special, although I think they behave this way with all new babies and mothers. I feel as if we are guarded by angels and watched over from heaven.Here in this humble little place, hidden away from all the business of life, we are treated with splendid kindness. Please let Momma and Papa know we are well, well beyond our imagining.