Monday, October 5, 2015

Receive Like A Child

 Some Pharisees came, and to test Jesus they asked, "Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife?" He answered them, "What did Moses command you?" They said, "Moses allowed a man to write a certificate of dismissal and to divorce her." But Jesus said to them, "Because of your hardness of heart he wrote this commandment for you. But from the beginning of creation, 'God made them male and female.' 'For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.' So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate."
Then in the house the disciples asked him again about this matter. He said to them, "Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her; and if she divorces her husband and marries another, she commits adultery."
People were bringing little children to him in order that he might touch them; and the disciples spoke sternly to them. But when Jesus saw this, he was indignant and said to them, "Let the little children come to me; do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of God belongs. Truly I tell you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will never enter it." And he took them up in his arms, laid his hands on them, and blessed them. Mark 10:2-16

*I tried to upload this yesterday, but we were in a place that had spotty internet connect. After much wrangling, I gave up and waited until I am back in Helena.*

I have three wonderful daughters who are the delight of my heart. Sometimes when they were young they taxed my patience a great deal. Our eldest, Emily, had a pretend brother named Mister. The problems that happened, the things that got broken or neglected, well, they were Mister's fault. We finally had to kindly suggest to her that Mister was not real and he had to disappear. We wanted her to take responsibility. We asked several days later where Mister had gone, and we were told, very matter of fact,  that Mister had gone into the woods and gotten shot by hunters. We hadn't anticipated such a violent ending. Children are always good problem solvers - we just hadn't expected quite this resolution.

The religious leaders were trying to tangle Jesus in arguments while not taking responsibility for their own behavior. They wanted to win at the game but not open their hearts. Jesus invites us all to move away from the politics and wrangling of adults and approach God with an open heart, like a child. Children are very literal and sometimes too direct. God invites us to be wholly ourselves, since we are loved already completely as a child of God.

Today, I ask God to let us all come to the feet of God as little children. May we forgive others and go on, let go of the trouble and trouble makers of our lives and rejoice in the love that we have today.

Almighty and everlasting God, you are always more ready to hear than we to pray, and to give more than we either desire or deserve: Pour upon us the abundance of your mercy, forgiving us those things of which our conscience is afraid, and giving us those good things for which we are not worthy to ask, except through the merits and mediation of Jesus Christ our Savior; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

No comments: