"At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, 'Who, then, is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?
He called a little child to him, and placed the child among them. And he said: 'Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven'". Matt 18
A lot has been said about this passage. I attended a session on "silliness" at a conference/retreat called Hutchmoot this past October. The session was lead by Phil Vischer (the voice of Bob the Tomato and now heads up What's in The Bible) and Randall Goodgame who writes and performs some of his music for children called 'Slugs & Bugs'. His latest effort is called Sing The Bible and I think it's my favorite album of 2013. You can find out more about that HERE.
Anyway, Randall asked our group what becoming like a little child means. What is a little child like? And our group said all the stuff you'd think we'd say. People shouted our things like innocent, joyful, creative, trusting and playful. All of which were affirmed by Randall. But then he surprised us. What about things like irritating, prideful, mean and selfish? Children are also like that.
The difference is, in a healthy home, children bring all of it to their parents. They bring hurts, arguments, annoyances, work, joy, laughter, messes...everything. When things are good, when things are bad, they come to Mom and Dad for help, advice, to share and to show off, for approval, permission and blessing.
And that's what Jesus wants from us.