First Reading: Ezk 2:8-3:4; Psalm: 119. R. v. 103a; Gospel: Mt 18:1-5. 10. 12-14
THE CHILDLIKE SPIRIT
BY FR VALENTINE NNAMDI EGBUONU, MSP
Aging comes with some necessary transition. Our attitudes, principles, thoughts, dispositions and initiative should improve or mature as we grow older. These and several behavioural changes are necessary indicators of maturity and transition from a stage of life to another. However, there are some attributes associated with childhood that we shouldn’t lose in view of the fact that such attributes are holy and are required for our spiritual growth. Jesus hinted at them in the gospel of today with the image of a little child.
For every Christian, to grow up is to become childlike. And this implies having that childlike spirit of obedience, humility, love, forgiveness, trust, dependence, and service. These qualities should shine out in our relationship with God and neighbour. When the disciples of Jesus wondered who was the greatest, Jesus simply told them to turn and become like little children for that was the way to salvation.
As adults, it can difficult but possible to have these qualities. It can be difficult because our world sees these childlike qualities as signs of weakness and foolishness. But Jesus is reminding us today to pay attention to them in our services to God and neighbour because they are the way to salvation. If we want to be great, we should be obedient to God, humble to serve, learn to forgive, and prove our love for God in the love we show to one another. Doing these things take a lot of pain, courage and perseverance. However, this should not discourage us if we have heaven as our goal.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY
Lord Jesus, grant us the grace to be childlike in heart. Amen.