Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Be Like The Children

Last week as I was walking back to the apartment where I've been living here in the Sahara, I passed a few different groups of children. I was struck by how carefree they were, apparently not caring about their surroundings.

First I crossed paths with three little ones, perhaps three, four and five years old, who were snaking their way down the sidewalk, as they trotted along. The one all the way in back had his hands on the hips of the middle one, who had his hands on the hips of the front one. They were pretending to be some sort of motorized vehicle, making beeping sounds as they navigated their way around people and items being sold on the dusty sidewalk.

Later I saw a little boy, maybe five or six years old, who was rolling a bicycle tire down a dirt road. One often sees kids here in town setting a tire rolling and then running after it, keeping it rolling by pushing it along with a stick.  They find amusement and opportunities for play in what they happen to find around them.

During this walk back to the apartment, I was greeted by other little children. As is so often the case when I am greeted by little children here in Morocco, they cheerfully greeted me in French by declaring, "Bonjour!"

Soon after I had seen all these little children, playing and otherwise seeming to be so happy, despite the poverty in which they are residing, unbothered to be living so simply, without many material comforts, I thought of a particular teaching of Jesus. In considering how joyous these children seem to be in such circumstances, I pondered that such an approach to life perhaps is at least part of what Jesus meant, at Matthew 18:4, when he counseled, "Whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven."

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