The longer I live the more I appreciate the simplicity of small children. I love to interact with my ten grandchildren—they keep me in stitches! Nothing is more precious (and often amusing) than the honest hearts of wee ones when they pray. Here are a few of my favorites:
Dear God: Thank you for the nice day today. You even fooled the TV weatherman. —Hank, 7
Dear God: Please bring me a new brother. The one I got socks me all the time. —Agnes, 6
Dear God: Please help me in school. I need help in spelling, adding, history, geography, and writing. I don’t need help in anything else. —Lois, 9
Dear God: I am saying my prayers for me and my brother, Billy, because Billy is six months old and he can’t do anything but sleep and wet his diapers. —Diane, 8
Funny stuff! More precious than their words is their unspoken sense of humble dependence. Remember the account in Matthew 18? The disciples approached Jesus and asked, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” (v. 1). Jesus provided a “little” illustration by having a child come and stand among them. Then He remarked, “I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven” (v. 3).
Did you hear it? We are to become like little children! Our position is to be one of humility and dependence—not one of innocence as is often proposed. Children are not innocent. As a friend of mine says, “They are just little sinners.” They are! However, they are in a position of dependence. Are you? Are you more apt to submit a “to do” list to the Lord than to express how much you need Him?
Without question, the little ones certainly need us. As grandparents, parents, aunts, uncles, neighbors, and friends, we have a great responsibility—those who are little depend on us. And as believers we are called to step into their small shoes. Only when we do can we truly say in humble dependence, “Lord … I sure need you.”
About the Contributors
Charles R. Swindoll has devoted his life to the accurate, practical teaching and application of God’s Word and His grace. A pastor at heart, Chuck has served as the founder and senior pastor-teacher of Stonebriar Community Church in Frisco, Texas. His leadership as president and now chancellor of Dallas Theological Seminary has helped prepare and equip a new generation for ministry. Chuck and his wife Cynthia, have four grown children, ten grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren.