Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Like Children

In Matthew, Jesus tells His followers that unless they become like children they will not enter the kingdom of heaven. I have always thought that referred to a level of innocence and trust that children have, and the idea of having blind faith. And, I do think that is a component of what Jesus was getting at. But recently, as I was watching Jameson and reflecting on some things I had read regarding infants' development, I looked at this idea in a new light.

Infants come from a warm, dark, wet, safe environment (the womb) and are suddenly bombarded with a plethora of sights, sounds, smells, tastes, etc that they have never before experienced. There is so much to take in as their senses are inundated with new experiences and sensations every waking moment. It is vitally important for them to have quiet time as well as ample amounts of sleep so as to process all the new information and experiences. During that time their brain pieces together all of these new findings to make sense of them. This helps them understand their surroundings and develop and mature as a person.

Could this be another component of us becoming like children? If we are truly walking with and growing in God, we are likely experiencing new and different things. It could be in the matter of things we are reading, messages we are listening too, things we are hearing from people in our community, experiences in our prayer life, and many, many other things. A natural part of growth is new experiences. But, in our society, we are so fast paced we often don't take time to process these new experiences. Something may catch at our subconconcious, we may have a little niggle in our mind, but often we blow past it, in a hurry to get on with our day. We value efficiency so much that we push thing aside instead of taking the time to understand them. It is seen as 'laziness' or 'weakness' to set aside time to rest, to meditate, to regroup. And what are we missing by doing this? Children wouldn't be able to mature into adults, would not be able to understand this world around them, without that quiet and restful time to process the many new experiences in their lives. If we continued to follow that process as children do, how much deeper of an understanding could we have of the things we experience in our lives everyday?

Maybe there is a lesson to be learned here, or maybe I am off on some unrelated tangent, but the thought came to me, and it is something I want to explore further. I must thank Jameson for putting this in my mind!