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'Becoming Childlike'

St. Jane Frances de Chantal

Unless you turn and become like children...

- Matthew 18:3

Little children before the age of two are present in a unique way to the wonder of life as it unfolds. Without pretense, they simply are who they are, nothing more. They have no thoughts about how they want to be perceived, nor do they contrive how to get ahead of someone else. They are what they are. Period.

There is a remarkable joy for us adults in the presence of such simplicity. I noticed two words in today's gospel that somehow have until now escaped my attention. They are the words "turn" and "become." The Greek word for "turn" more accurately means "to turn about," as if to say, "unless you turn around so as to go in an opposite direction..." Jesus is saying to his disciples that if you want to enter the Kingdom of heaven, you must do something--switch directions and become something you presently are not. Embrace the lowliness and wonder of the child who lives each moment as a gift, not as a stepping-stone for social status. It is to those who live in childlike simplicity that the Kingdom of heaven belongs.

- Sr. Kathryn J. Hermes, F.S.P.
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One of the main features of children that I observe is there joy for life there unconditional love and a strong desire to be social with one another. It may be that what it ment by "turning around" is a focus on these qualities in us rather then the qualities that us adults tend to put emphasis on, such as judging and condemning our neighbors who make the same mistakes that we do.
Just my humbled opinion. Peace be with you all!
Daniel | Posted on: 2014-08-12 07:36:48
How true. Simply true. Thank you.
Harold | Posted on:: 2014-08-13 02:46:30
The reason that tax collectors and prostitutes were drawn to Jesus, is that they recognized their sinfulness...their lowliness. Society would have made their sins impossible to ignore. Jesus came to offer a remedy for that sin, that brokenness. And with forgiveness, through Him alone, came reconciliation with the Father and eternal life.

These people were anxious to "turn around" or repent from their sin. The problem with the wise,the wealthy, the religious, and the learned was that they refused to see their sin. They covered their ears and sought to destroy God's messengers.

May we each become like children, or like the prostitute and tax collector...realizing we are weak, helpless, and broken...turn from ours sins and toward Jesus' loving arms.
jon | Posted on: 2014-08-12 05:52:41
Christiane W | Posted on:: 2014-08-12 07:09:54
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