Then little children were being brought to him in order that he might lay his hands on them and pray. The disciples spoke sternly to those who brought them; but Jesus said, ‘Let the little children come to me, and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of God belongs.’ And he laid his hands on them and went on his way. (Matthew 19: 13-15)
The disciples think the little children are distracting Jesus. They clearly subscribe to the school that says, “Children should be seen, but not heard.” They are adamant that children shouldn’t be in the Master’s lap because they can be grubby, loud, fidgety, unpredictable, and willful.
There are so many things the disciples don’t understand.
They don’t understand that Jesus has a lap without bounds.
They don’t understand that Jesus came for all children.
They don’t understand that Jesus wants them to rest on Him and to have their noses [read lives] wiped clean by Him.
They don’t understand that Jesus is well aware that all of God’s children are sometimes grubby, loud, fidgety, unpredictable and willful, and that He wants them all in His lap nonetheless.
And, finally, they don’t understand that simply being in the lap of Jesus can make the grubby clean, the loud quiet, the fidgety still, the unpredictable steady, and the willful willing.
We are never too old to get into Jesus’ lap. And let’s never think we are too sophisticated to hear the story of God’s love that Jesus wants to share with His arms around us.
Today I encourage us to pray ourselves into the lap of Jesus. Jesus feels joy when we settle into His lap. We don’t need to worry about there being a place for us. We don’t need to police His lap. We don’t need to compete for His affection. We only need to rest in His lap and invite others to join us so that they too can know the joy and peace of being there.
- If you were to find yourself in the lap of Jesus, what do you need for Him to be saying to you?
- Is there someone Jesus may be asking you to invite into His lap, His love, His grace? If so, what are you waiting for?
- Have you ever acted like the disciples who spoke sternly to those children? If so, when? If so, to whom? If so, is it time for you to go back to them with an invitation and not a rebuke, a word of grace and not a reprimand?