Children are relentlessly human and live entirely in the moment. When they are hungry, they are hungry. When they play, they play. They are affectionate, they can be quite blunt, they are impressionable, and they quickly adapt to changes. They effortlessly learn, they pick up their mother tongue within a few years, and they believe in fairy tales. They are curious, test boundaries, and get dirty – a noisy ball of energy, as active as the days are long. To their parents delight they eventually get tired and fall asleep only to wake up in the morning and do it all over again.
To study children is to study humanity. When God created us, He created us as children first and adults second. I venture to say that our adulthood suffers when we didn’t have much of a childhood. I also believe that we experience a more successful adulthood when we stay in touch with our inner child.
Growing up and dealing with our responsibilities, there’s one thing that doesn’t change: we will always be sons and daughters. Even with our parents long gone, we are who we are thanks to the roots that go back to our childhood.
Estranged from God as we may be, we are still His children. At the end of the day we’re all rooted in the Creator of the universe. God fathered us. We are the result of His genius. It was His idea to create not only humans but an amazing array of astounding species that fill today’s universe. What we see on Earth is just the tip of the iceberg.
The spontaneous show of affection children displayed as they checked out Jesus tells us something. This must have been the way humans interacted with God at the dawn of creation. Jesus knows that, and I believe that’s why He encourages us to look at children some more. He wants to help us remember who we are.