Likely few of us have thought of little children and the words “innocent,” “intelligent,” and “influential” in the same sentence.
But Jesus tells us, in Matthew 18:3, to “become like little children.” What does He mean?
He asks us to become and stay innocent. Like a little child, who knows no sin, who doesn’t know how to lie or deceive, who doesn’t intentionally hurt another.
Truly a little child’s intelligence may need some help as it expands — education, skill training, molding and growth — but as we grow older and more intelligent, do we use our intelligence as if we were child-like?
An intelligent child will learn by discipline, from his or her own mistakes, and will progress from point A to point B building on what he or she sees or hears around his or her world.
And lastly how can a little child possibly influence? Influence can mean many things to many people but if used properly, each of us — from the youngest to the oldest — has influence over another.
Simple actions influence — a child’s smile offering hope, the outstretched hand from child to parent or grandparent, the willingness to listen with small ears when older lips provide encouragement or instruction, and the list goes on.
When offering back to God gifts of gratitude, I believe He expects us to come having flushed our minds and heart so that we are in a state of mind and heart of innocence, intelligence, and influence.
And then we will have become like a child.
Shall we try this little exercise this week as we share the counting of His gifts to us?
* * *
654. A week of physical exercise confirming the success of my last spinal surgery in December. (A smile goes here!)
655. Good reports from faraway friends about their health.
656. Good news from a niece at Campus Crusades in Orlando.
657. Anniversaries celebrated.
658. Time spent with a friend from out-of-town.
659. Building memories as we grow as a family once again.
660. The birth of Eloise on Thursday.
661. Eloise’s daddy’s expressions of joy and amazement.
662. A gathering of church friends over the weekend.
If you’d like to learn more about counting your 1000 gifts, hop on over to Ann’s for Multitudes on Mondays.