Just some early morning thoughts from me to you…
A four year old girl was overheard whispering into her newborn baby brother’s ear, “Baby,” she whispers, “tell me what God sounds like. I am starting to forget.”
Robert Benson, Between Dreaming and the Coming True
The newest opportunity for Granddaddy to play and serve his two precious Granddaughters is with a ride they call the “Magic Carpet Ride.” A small couch pillow serves as the “magic carpet” with either Hannah or Ellie Kate kneeling in a scrunched-up position on the pillow.
Then the engine—Granddaddy—takes a firm hold of both sides of the pillow (also securing the precious kneeling cargo between his arms) and slowly begins the lift-off. The “magic carpet” gains speed as it flies high into the heavens, above cities and country-sides seen in the distance far below, over bridges and around skyscrapers it passes along the journey. As the fuel begins to get low—often sooner than expected—the “magic carpet” begins a high-speed whirly-bird-like circling decent with a couple of upside-down loops thrown in to elicit shrieks from the passenger, until it lands safely and with as soft a landing as what’s left of my balance will allow.
“Again, Gran, again.”
Over and over until we finally have to negotiate a specific number of rides remaining. It hasn’t replaced “Monkey”—a form of a horse-back ride usually with both girls riding at the same time, coupled with a lot of radical movements designed to throw them off the ride, and ultimately toss them in a laughing ball on the couch. But the “Magic Carpet Ride” is the latest adventure.
There’s a reason Christ gathered little children around Him. There’s a reason He said that “such is the Kingdom of Heaven.” They were humble and unconcerned with social status. And they were fun to be around. They hung onto His every word. They were probably always making up games to play with or without Him. And part of why Christ gathered the little children around Him may have been because the adults who were hanging around him were no longer smiling—life had become too serious—and they were no longer listening to Him. They were no fun to be around anymore.
The rules and requirements of society of what it meant to be an “adult” had closed their ears to the gentle whispers of God’s voice. So think about it—Who would you choose to be around—a bunch of folks who always looked like they were sucking on a dill pickle, or some others who wanted to play “Magic Carpet Ride?”
Christ knew that what He saw on the outside of folks around Him reflected what was on the inside. I can’t help but think that it made Him sad when he looked into the faces of a lot of the adults who came out to see Him. I also can’t help but believe that He wanted them to change—to start hearing His voice again, to spend time with Him, without all the trappings of society and its religious institutions.
I know too many people who are in desperate need of a “Magic Carpet Ride.” You do, too. I was one of them years ago. You may have been also. There are many people all around us who never smile. Oh, they’ll laugh at something that’s funny or smile at something they’re supposed to, but they just don’t smile anymore—if they ever did—at the simple wonder of being alive, and of the possibility of a “Magic Carpet Ride”—at any age. Their usual countenance is dull, lifeless and smile-less.
They’ll give you a lot of reasons for the frown on their faces and in their hearts—some may have had something happen in their lives they can’t get over. Some say they were raised that way—it’s their culture. But none of the reasons are good enough to allow them to close their ears to the still small voice of God and all He wants to share with them about the life He intended for them to live.
Years ago A.W. Tozer said that…
“Culture is putting out the light in men and women’s souls.”
I think he was right. There are too many people—men, women, mothers, fathers, pastors, business folks, young and older—walking around with dullness written all over their faces. They wake up each morning with a frown on their hearts and a grump in their voice. And the saddest thing—the thing that must give Christ a fit—is that they pass it on to loved ones around them and their children, who in turn are passing it on to their children. And so the cycle repeats itself.
You want to catch a glimpse of the life Christ intended for you to live? Watch the heart of a little child. Notice the innocence. Pay attention to their excitement in seeing and doing the seemingly smallest of things. The child-like innocence, idealistic fervor and passion of a child which was once ours.
Watch them—learn from them. Don’t throw cold water on them—one day you’ll have to explain why you did if you do—but, instead, change and become like them, no matter your age.
People may laugh at you—especially those who have learned how to be adults. But it will be a ride you, Christ and those around you will never forget.
In His Name—Scott
Copyright 2009. Scott L. Whitaker. All rights reserved.