Note from the Pastor
“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.” - Matthew 18: 1-3
So the other night, I was sitting in the living room doing something holy and righteous (probably watching Survivor), and a strange thing happened. Cutting through the air right in front of me was a pink piece of paper bent and folded into an aerodynamic shape which allowed it to glide across the room. It was a paper airplane.
I thought it odd that a paper airplane would be flying across the living room so late in the evening, as the kids were already tucked into bed and sleeping. Also, the only place this flying pink projectile could have come from was the last place I would have expected it to come from. I looked to my left, to the seat that my wife normally occupies in the evening, not knowing what to expect, and sitting in my wife’s seat was… my wife. Her only response to my look was to quirk a little smile, so I went back to being holy.
But then it happened again. And again. And again. Each time I looked. Each time the same smile (getting a little bigger each time). Until there were a dozen or more little pink paper airplanes laying on the floor.
Eventually I noticed Bri had a stack of little pink papers and a book on her lap about how to fold different paper airplanes. She was going through it page by page, making each plane, and giving them a test flight. I don’t know what brought it on, and frankly I don’t care, because that little activity, an activity I haven’t really even thought about since Junior High, brought her so much joy. It probably did my soul as much good to see the joy on her face and in her eyes as it did her to make and fly her little pink planes.
When Jesus tells us we need to become like children, we can take it a number of different ways. He could be telling us to be obedient or to trust like a child does a parent. While those may be true and good interpretations, I believe there is more to it. Jesus is asking us, in our faith, to return to the way things were when we were young.
Adults can make a mess of things. We don’t make friends or forgive as quickly as we did when we were kids. We overcomplicate faith, mixing it with politics and philosophy, when in reality, God is far more pleased when we can simplify the process, become like children (the children of God we are), and find joy in the simple things.
Looking for pink paper of my own,
Don’t forget to check out the “Grace Cubed” podcast wherever you get your podcasts
or go to www.anchor.fm/gracecubed
Cherry Hill United Methodist Church