by Tony P.
“And they were bringing children to him…”
We’ve seen Jesus do a lot of wonderful things up to now, here in Mark. The teaching has been amazing, addressing issues of the day and issues of the heart, with compassion, poignancy, and precision. The healings have been nothing short of...well... miraculous...where no constraint is to be found on the reach and effectiveness of Jesus’ power.
But, up to now, who has been the recipient Jesus’ graciousness? The disciples? Sure, day in and day out, sitting at Jesus’ feet in untold settings, being taught, as well as witness to all the healings and miracles. The sick? In the most sensory way, absolutely. Imagine YOUR withered, defective hand growing to fullness and strength before your very eyes! The Pharisees and Scribes? Eh, not so much grace there. Every attack they made on Jesus resulted in being excoriated by him in front of the crowds. Witnesses in general? To be sure, but, to the point, the recipients of Jesus’ graciousness have been ADULTS.
And, now, a lot of moms and dads, thinking that the best way to be healed, since sickness was seen as a punishment, was to keep from getting sick. Even more, to prevent the need of healing. Yet more, to prevent the cause of punishment: sin, as was the belief. And moms and dads are thinking that if Jesus can do what he does, and if He is who he is saying he is, why not? What do you do for your kids? What wouldn’t you do for your kids?
I have kept a quote on my desk for decades, now:
“If piety were to be obtained for you only by purchase, and I were rich in the possession of worlds, I would beggar myself to the last farthing to render you a Christian, and think the purchase cheap.” John Angell James, The Christian Father’s Present to His Children, 1827.
But we can’t do that, can we? There is no purchase even possible to make, but to usher our children to the feet of Jesus, for it is only in his blessing that there lies any hope for our children.
Take heart, mom, dad, and bring your kids to Jesus at every opportunity. Press through every obstacle (the unwitting disciples!). Place your faith in The One who gladly redeems and blesses children.