If you are like me, when you hold a young child, grandchild, a niece or nephew in your arms, you feel like you just received the most beautiful exquisite gift from God. You see beauty in today. You see life after death. You know that hope for the future has been borne in the birth of each child. But, not everyone has a heart that sees the beauty of the innocence within children, the innocent ones.
Dorothy and I have been watching reruns of the television series Downton Abby. One scene showed an example of a nanny who was blind to innocence. The nanny was left in charge of two infants. George, the child of two very wealthy parents, and Sybbie, the young daughter of a very wealthy mother and the family’s Irish chauffeur. One afternoon, Lady Grantham, Sybbie’s grandmother, overheard the nanny say to Sybbie “Go back to sleep you wicked little cross-breed”. Nanny West showed preference for the care and needs of George. The nanny’s heart was blind to her own wickedness. For that, Lady Grantham sent her packing.
This short scene from Downton Abby was fictional. But, sadly even today, not all hearts are open to see the innocence within the innocent, God’s children. At a Christian preschool, there were many children enrolled by their parents trusting that the kids would be loved, nurtured and kept safe. The Head of the preschool was dedicated to do her part to fulfill her calling and be a part of the church’s community of care. One day the Head noticed that at lunchtime a young boy was placed alone at a table in the corner of the room while all the other children were gathered around other tables to eat lunch together. Curiously, the Head asked the preschool worker why she had seated the boy alone at the table and not with the other children. To the shock and dismay of the Head, the preschool worker said, “You see that little boy is a bastard. He is illegitimate. I am sure the parents of the other legitimate children would not want their children to be near a bastard.” Thankfully, the Head said in reply, “Every child at the preschool should be treated with the same love, care and acceptance as God. Since you clearly do not believe that to be true and not as your Christian duty, you are to quietly gather up your things and leave. This is not the place for you to work.”
God has spoken to us in Scripture about the innocence of the innocent.
But Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.”
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these.
As many of you know from reading my book, Bending Angels, my very first memory of my mother was her leaning over my baby crib. I recall the silhouette of my young mother as she bent down and picked me up in her arms. I can only imagine what she felt as she held me as a baby, as God’s innocent one. Did she see me as her little Angel like I saw her as mine, then and now? How can any of us be indifferent to the beauty, wonder, joy, and love in every child, whether you or me or the preschool worker towards the boy at the Christian preschool or the fictionalized nanny in Downton Abby? We must see the innocence of the innocents if we are to love all children as God undeniably loves us
God, in prayer we ask you to keep all hearts open and able to see the innocence of all innocents throughout the world.
God, in prayer may the children of the world know that we can see the beauty you created in them, their births, their lives.
God, in prayer please grant us the wisdom to recognize that when our hearts are open to the beauty, love and innocence of Your children, we may find those same gifts from You within us. Amen
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Jack H. Emmott is a Senior Counsel of Gray, Reed & McGraw, LLP, a 145-lawyer full-service firm in Houston, Dallas, and Waco, Texas, a Board-Certified Family Law and Master Credentialed Collaborative Law Professional Divorce Attorney, Mediator, Author, Entrepreneur and Inspirational Speaker. For more information about Jack or his latest book, Bending Angels: Living Messengers of God’s Love, go to the Bending Angel website.
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