A Childlike Love

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

We all give and receive love so differently. 

For example, I know that my mom loves me or anyone else for that matter through cooking.  Food is her love language. If she really, really loves you she’ll make you egg rolls.

I discovered this test called “Five Love Languages” not too long ago and it’s such a great resource.  The premise is that we all feel love in very specific ways.  Some of us need quality time with our loved ones, some feel loved through acts of service, others through physical touch like hugs and hand holding, still others through thoughtful small gifts, and some recognize love through words of affirmation.

My husband and I took the test and we found it eye opening.  It helps us understand how to intentionally show appreciation for each other in a way that we know will truly reach the other. 

I never thought much about how Henry shows us love aside from the sweet kisses and hugs he gives until we picked him up one day from childcare.  Our friend Jenny, did a craft with Henry and a few others in childcare while we attended a bible study.  She asked each child how they show love to others.  What I saw surprised me. 

Written on one of the hearts was:

How I Love My Mom
Hide and Seek

Hide and seek?  The week before the only game Henry wanted to play was play hide and seek.  I count and he hides in the same places over and over giggling the whole time.  I roll my eyes but play anyway and admittedly, I’m bored after a few games. 

I looked at the craft heart with surprise.  In disbelief, I uttered, “You mean every time he asks me to play this ridiculous game he’s saying he loves me?!” 

Instead of looking at this repetitive game as an inconvenience this was such a good reminder to me to take a minute and really pay attention to my child and what he’s telling me through little things like the games we play.

My friend smiled and reminded me of a quote I love from GK Chesterton, and here’s the full text:

A child kicks his legs rhythmically through excess, not absence, of life. Because children have abounding vitality, because they are in spirit fierce and free, therefore they want things repeated and unchanged. They always say, “Do it again”; and the grown-up person does it again until he is nearly dead. For grown-up people are not strong enough to exult in monotony.  But perhaps God is strong enough to exult in monotony. It is possible that God says every morning, “Do it again” to the sun; and every evening, “Do it again” to the moon. It may not be automatic necessity that makes all daisies alike; it may be that God makes every daisy separately, but has never got tired of making them. It may be that He has the eternal appetite of infancy; for we have sinned and grown old, and our Father is younger than we.

So much of our days are filled with repetitive acts.  Put in the laundry, take out the laundry, fold the laundry, do it all again tomorrow.  Or if you live in my house, let the clean laundry sit in a tall pile until you just can’t take it any more and then you maybe put it back in the wash so it at least it’s doing something other than sitting in a pile on the floor. The monotony or the attitude of monotony ages us.  

We are too busy because often the root of it is we feel we are too important to do this pointless task…the laundry, the cleaning, counting to 10 and seeking out a child a million times.

Today’s reading (what is read in every Catholic mass throughout the world today) is taken from Matthew Chapter 18: 1-5, 10, 12-14.

The disciples were arguing about who is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven. Which is pretty funny if you ask me.  If I made it to Heaven I'm pretty sure I'd be wearing a t-shirt that says "Just Happy To Be Here".   

Jesus says to them,

Amen, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will not enter the Kingdom of heaven. Whoever becomes humble like this child is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven. And whoever receives one child such as this in my name receives me.
And so that leaves us a lot to ponder.  

What does it mean to be childlike?  What qualities do you think Jesus was talking about here? And how can we become more childlike in our daily life?

Feel free to jump in the comments below, I'd love to hear your thoughts. 



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