Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Out of the Mouth of Babes!

A few years ago I was trying hard to teach a Sunday school lesson to a rather unruly group of seven and eight year old boys and girls one morning. There was one little boy who persisted in interrupting me with questions or remarks that had nothing whatsoever to do with the lesson that day. “Would you please be quiet?” I finally blurted out! The little fellow stopped in mid-sentence and looked at me in surprise. A classmate jeeringly added his two cents... “He’s always gettin' in trouble! Nobody likes him at school. He don’t have any friends!” I thought to myself, “What a rude thing for a little boy to say about his peer. How that must hurt!” About that time another boy in the class piped up and announced, “Well, I’ll be his friend !” The little guy who had been the focus of this conversation looked as if he’d been given a hundred dollars. That simple offer of friendship seemed to amaze him. I thought about my reaction to his constant interruptions and decided that maybe the lesson that God wanted me to teach that day was not the one written in my Sunday School book but one of His love for each and every person in the world, especially little children.

The situation reminded me of a verse in the Old Testament…Proverbs 10: 12, “Hatred stirreth up strifes: but love covereth all sins.” The first little boy’s comments “stirred up strife” but the love in the other boy’s declaration, “I’ll be his friend!”, covered all imperfections! Out of the mouth of babes! I suppose that may be why Jesus said that unless we come to Him as little children we cannot know Him.
(“Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein.” Mark 10: 15)

Children have the ability to love totally, completely, and without the promise of being loved in return. They don’t ask, “What’s in it for me?” How nice it would be if I could take the wisdom that comes with age and combine it with the love that only a child can give. What a full life that would be. The only thing better would be the fullness of life in Christ.
(“And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fullness of God.” Ephesians 3: 19)

We can have the fullest life imaginable through God’s gift of eternal life. God will give this life eternal if we will only accept Him and His free pardon of sin.
(“And I will give them an heart to know me, that I am the LORD; and they shall be my people, and I will be their God: for they shall return unto me with their whole heart.” Jeremiah 24: 7)

People still look for a “Fountain of Youth”. And there are some of us who have found it! With eternal life in Christ, we will live forever with Him in a land “where we’ll never grow old”.
(“And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new….” Revelation 21: 4-5a)

My prayer is that you, too, have received eternal life through Jesus Christ!



Joyful said...

Oh I could just hug the little boy that offered to be a friend. The gift of a friend is a treasure. I'm so glad you're my friend, Marilyn.


Deborah said...

Great post Marilyn! What a blessing that little boy must have been to all around him!

Kay Martin said...

In my humble opinion this is your greatest post. How profound and real. "I'll be your friend." How many people are hoping they will hear that?

Thank you for making my day.

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

What a precious reminder to love without conditions! Children are just so real...mine have certainly given me a wealth of teachable moments over the years. Love the photo.