I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”
Mark 10 v 15 (NIV)
To receive the kingdom of God like a little child, I thought meant to accept what Jesus said wholesale, and without questioning it. Because that’s what children do, right? We tell them that there are five senses, and they believe it. That two add two equals four, and they believe that, too. It’s only later in life, as adults, that people start to question these ‘truths’ and discover proprioception is a pretty useful sense, not counted among the five, and that whether two add two equals four depends.
But as someone pointed out last night – unquestioning acceptance is not necessarily the way that children receive the world. Children have the tendency to ask the most awkward questions, and frequently question the adults around them…”Why (do I have to go to school),…. why (is the sky blue),…. how does Father Christmas visit everyone in one night? Why? My response is often “because why has a curly tail”. Which quietens them. For a moment at least.
What is special about this questioning is that children know that they can question the adults around them. It’s allowed. And the adults won’t banish them for it. And if God is a parent, then we are allowed to question Him, too, without fear of being turned away. He doesn’t mind our questions. He wants our honesty, and our questions. He wants us to interact with Him.