The Wonder of a Child

by Freida Harrison

“Life has loveliness to sell, all beautiful and splendid things, blue waves whitened on a cliff, soaring fire that sways and sings, and children’s faces looking up, holding wonder like a cup.”    
~~quote from the poem “Barter” by Sara Teasdale (emphasis mine)

20130814_01aWhile on a nature walk out in the country, I was carrying my fourteen-month-old granddaughter, Hallie Mae, as my family and I walked across the dirt and grass toward the pathway that led down to the water. Upon entering the trail, the shade from the canopy of trees shielded us from the bright sunshine causing a noticeable difference in the light. Hallie Mae’s brothers were ahead of us ambling along with “Pappy”, my daughter was in the middle, while baby girl and I sauntered along behind.

As we stepped a few yards into this wooded world, Hallie lifted her little chin, pointed up to the canopy of trees, and a slow, full smile spread across her face from ear to ear. Those big brown eyes filled with wonder, then began to dance with merriment and excitement. Not wanting to break the spell, I spoke in a voice just above a whisper, “Trees. Do you see the trees?” She looked at me with absolute amazement, nodded her head once, clapped twice, then looked up toward the tops of the trees again while pointing as high as her little arm would extend. She was captivated by the height and density of the trees.

20130814_02aWe traipsed down the rocky trail, and Hallie continued to point as high as she could toward the trees, searching and smiling in wonderment. Each time she lifted her head toward the sky and pointed, I repeated, “Trees, do you see the trees?” She would nod her head once, then look at me, making sure I was seeing them too. When we reached the water, she showed Pappy, her Mommy, and brothers what she had discovered. The look of wonder and enchantment on her precious little face melted my heart, filling me with love and elation for what I had just experienced with our little toddler.

After observing the joy and wonder on the face of my baby granddaughter last week, I have a deeper understanding of what Jesus was expressing in Luke 18:15-17.

Those verses say:

People were also bringing babies to Jesus to have him touch them. When the disciples saw this, they rebuked them. But Jesus called the children to him and said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”

Jesus wants us to know that we need to be in awe of Him and the kingdom of God. How pleased He must be when we grasp His significance in the same manner as innocent little children. I’ve witnessed children’s eyes fill with wonder and amazement when they seek Him and pray—an openness that is simple and sincere. This simplicity is a lesson that I plan to put into practice.

Our Savior’s desire is for us to be dependent on God as little children are dependent on their parents for their every need. Let us remember to have that same child-likeness as we surrender our lives to Him with total trust, obedience, and faith.

Heavenly Father, what an awesome God you are. Thank you Father for the special memory with my granddaughter, and thank you for using her to help me better comprehend the wonder of You. Please guide me to receive Your kingdom with eyes filled with the excitement and awe of a little child. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Hallie Mae in her high chair responding to the question, "Where are the trees?"
Hallie Mae in her high chair responding to the question, “Where are the trees?”

Copyright © 2013, Freida Harrison, all rights reserved, Breath of Life Women’s Ministries. Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. All rights reserved worldwide. Used by permission.

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