Mark 10: 13-16
Stop doing that! Phil and I sometimes hear our neighbours saying these words loudly. We know one of the children is doing something that the parents don’t want them to do. In this passage from Mark’s gospel, the disciples were saying something similar, but they were talking to the adults who were bringing children to Jesus to be blessed.
We all know children – as parents, grandparents, teachers or in other ways. We all sometimes see or hear children doing or saying things we don’t like. We know that children aren’t perfect. Even when children are behaving well, there are times when as adults we’d like a bit of peaceful time away from children. The disciples were probably thinking that the children and/or their parents would be pestering Jesus.
Jesus isn’t worried. He accepted the presence of the children. He cuddled them and blessed them. He showed that anyone of any age would find room in his kingdom.
We all know that small children love attention and love cuddles. They accepted Jesus without question. We all know teenagers who start to be embarrassed by their parents or don’t want too much adult attention. Some adults find new situations awkward; some find it difficult to accept help; some find faith problematic.
When Jesus calls people into his kingdom, he wants us to be accepting like children; to accept all that being part of his family offers; to accept his unconditional love; to accept forgiveness.
we give thanks that all ages are accepted into your kingdom of love.
We pray that everyone will be open to your call and ready to accept you.
We pray too for children and adults who have not come from loving,
caring backgrounds who find it difficult to form relationships
and to be open to others. Amen.