We have three grandchildren for the weekend. Mum and Dad are taking a well-deserved break.
“And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 18:3
We don’t preach to them. They teach us.
The excitement over a bubble machine. The squeals when a bubble pops on a face. The over and over again simple pleasure in some bubble-liquid and ordinary air!
The tiredness and refusal to admit it. The howls of outrage as bed beckons for a midday siesta. Then the gratitude and kiss “goodnight” in perfect peace.
The joy of tickles. The love of being chased. The fun of playing tip (on the little chair). The enthusiasm for a slice of tomato and a grated piece of cheese. The giggles. The smiles. The yells and the tears.
But most of all the love and acceptance of love. The absolute acceptance of being loved.
We don’t teach them and they don’t preach to us.
We see the wonder with which they see.
We see the simplicity with which they see.
We feel the immediacy with which they feel.
We forget with abandon just as they forget.
We live with their eyes that see so differently to ours.
We love with simple hearts that ours have made complicated.
We are with them and they with us.
And again I am reminded how the complexity of religious academia allows me to create so many barriers between me and GSHJ. And I reminded how the simplicity of a child makes love so simple, this moment so simple, this pain so easy to heal, this laughter so easy to find, this love so easy to give – and so easy to receive.
And yet tomorrow in church it will again be complicated and grown-up.
But not in this house.
We have three grandchildren for the whole weekend. Mum and Dad are taking a well-deserved break.