“Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.” Luke 18:17
Are those the qualities required to receive the kingdom of God?
But what if joy, innocence, and all the rest, are wrenched from the toddler by thoughtless, self-centered parents?
Some of my psychotherapy clients are wary of relationships, don’t feel much self-worth, and are afraid God won’t pay them any more attention than their parents did.
So what does Jesus mean when He says to receive His kingdom “like a little child?” We adults can’t just set aside the weight of life: can’t cut out the thoughts and feelings burned in our brains that make love and trust a challenge.
Picture a child reaching up to Mommy or Daddy.
We were all born with that innate need to be picked up and held. Then picture some big, I mean really big, hands reaching down to pick you up—fulfilling your need.
I’m no biblical scholar, but it seems to me Jesus is saying simply, “Reach up to me. Come.”
O come, little children, O come one and all,
To Bethlehem haste, to the manger so small,
God’s son for a gift has been sent you this night
To be your redeemer, your joy and delight.
from the Christmas carol, “O Come, Little Children”